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CYOA Team SALTY (RWBY start)

Discussion in 'Creative Writing' started by Jonakhensu, Sep 22, 2020.

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  1. Threadmarks: Ash Trailer (Ash's Intro)
    Jonakhensu

    Jonakhensu I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Ash Trailer (Ash's Intro)

    A portal materialized for a moment before spitting a small pink kitten onto the ground. Looking around the forest he now inhabited, a voice that did not belong to a kitten filled the clearing.

    “The fuck did he mean I’m not in Pokemon!?”

    The darkness between the trees seemed to intensify at this, issuing forth a masked wolf made of shadows. The wolf walked menacingly towards the kitten before being speared by a sword that seemed to form from nothing.

    “Well, at least Illusion works like I thought, and that was either a grimm or a hollow.”

    The kitten sighed. “I know almost nothing about either of those fandoms...”




    Captain’s Log, Star date; Two years since Insert

    After fighting off numerous Grimm and surviving off the land in a forest for ages I finally found the edge of the woods. This was managed by giving up and actually flying, only to find that I had been only a few miles away from a cliff on the coastline the entire time. Travelling along the cliff I was finally able to confirm that the world I am trapped in is RWBY since the school Beacon was under construction. Plans have been made for a few… Additions to the school.

    ...Alright, fine, I’m adding a mysterious shrine under the school to troll Ozpin. I can probably pull off having it intersect with the vault without actually intersecting, I’ve gotten good enough with my attempts to copy my Pocket Room for that at least.
    Currently I’ve been hanging around the construction area as a Zorua, subtly helping people. I think they’ve started some odd rumors about a lucky fox…

    ~RWBY; A frontier. These are the stories of the Mew Ash. His continuing mission; to explore this new world. To learn things beyond his world. To boldly troll where none have trolled before.~




    Dear Diary,

    Finally got my Aura unlocked but my semblance remains nonexistent. Adding Aura to my moves and abilities seems to make them react to semblances like they are moves and abilities. First thing I tried was Sketch, it worked…

    This would be better if most of the semblances about were stronger, but the best I’ve found so far is basically a carbon copy of Shadow Clones. I remember a lot of people have clone-type semblances in the show, it’s probably because the guy I got the clones off of acts like a stereotypical Bard.

    The shrine has been incredibly successful, it resembles Celebi’s Ilex forest shrine, but at the center of a pool in a cave with an opening in the top showing the moon. I’ve been opening paths to it during the two moon phases that seem to have replaced full and dark, that is full and broken. I even made different things happen depending on the phase. During a full moon I make use of Mirror Move, Future Sight, and Me First as well as copious use of Illusion to spawn a mirror copy of whatever hunter stumbles upon the shrine from the pool that they can fight. During the shattered phase I have the pool turn black like the Grimm pools and spawn a nearly endless stream of ‘Grimm’ made entirely of shadow. Said grimm are actually clones of mine using illusion.

    The trials have gotten me an incredible amount of experience in all kinds of fighting, and if the hunters do well I leave them a prize depending on which trial. Full is a Sketched weapon that compliments their fighting style, the fancy shapeshifting weapons don’t seem too advanced yet, so mine are usually better (though I really need to learn more about weapon creation). From the Cracked trial the prize is something I took absolute ages to develop, a Lunar Medallion, it’s Lunar Dance in pendant form that’ll automatically activate if someone’s aura is drained. Luckily my strength regenerates quickly with a night’s sleep so I can make one before bed each night.




    Dear Self,
    I am writing this letter in case you manage to temporarily wipe your memories with your new semblance… again. You do not have very many memories of RWBY canon so stop trying to recover them. Attempting to recover memories that don’t exist is what did this last time, if you wait they’ll come back, but until then I recommend watching Fairy Tail again. There’s another ability called Archive there that we might be able to make with this.
    -Ash

    P.S. Don’t go near Beacon without putting up a human illusion again, people are starting to make even more legends about Beacon’s Fox.

    P.P.S. The fridge has some berries and whatnot if you get hungry, don’t forget to replenish it, hunting for food on an empty stomach isn’t fun.

    P.P.P.S. You already looked through Beacon for worthwhile Semblances to copy, hardly anyone has an ability that you don’t already, the next place to check is the guy the Schnees are mad at for having a Semblance like theirs.

    P.P.P.P.S. Stop trying to pull a Jason Bourne, it’s getting annoying.




    Dear Tom,

    You were a lonely dork, right? How’d you deal with immense boredom.

    ‘...’

    Yes, I am going to keep calling you a dork, your plans were terrible and you were offed by a prophecy. Or a teenager. Not sure which is worse. Also I think most people would frown on manslaughter.

    ‘...’

    As someone that’s closer to Faunus than Man I take exception to that! Besides I still haven’t figured out magic since Ozpin never uses it.

    ‘You really ought to socialize more. Preferably by bothering someone that isn’t me.’

    I socialize all the time, I even made a Zoroark Faunus illusion, or possibly transformation, so I can run the Beacon Black Market. Not to mention the shrine events I do.

    ‘Being a shopkeep hardly counts, and your ‘events’ are just fighting people. And not even fighting them as yourself, you either send waves of Grimm at them or make a so-called ‘Mirror Clone’ that’s just you abusing Mirror Move.’

    It’s still technically socializing, and fighting is one of the only forms of socialization most shounen protagonists use. Besides Mirror Combat is a perfectly valid tactic, not to mention how much it helps them improve.

    ‘You know what I meant, and you aren’t the protagonist. You are, at best, whatever Evangiline McDowell would qualify as.’

    In that case socialization obviously isn’t needed. At least I think, should probably rewatch those memories, maybe release a manga on it. Heaven knows Archive makes doing things like that easy now. Besides, back to the original argument, I’m talking with you, aren’t I?

    ‘Yes, talking with me, you don’t see anything… Odd, about that?’

    I talk with my clones all the time, a psychotic break writing back to myself in a diary is hardly different. That and I’m pretty sure you’re a clone trying to mess with me.

    ‘...Spoilsport’

    It’s a good idea though, but we should find better targets, like Ozpin. His reaction to not being able to find the Black Market was hilarious.

    ‘Your classic ‘products’ have done great for that, maybe you should consider figuring out how to expand into Sketched items that have impossible abilities?’

    I was thinking more along the lines of releasing Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings where Dumbles/Gandalf are obviously Ozpin, but your idea has merit as well.




    To whomever finds this;

    It has been forty years, I can’t go on. It’s been so boring recently, Ozpin has stopped reacting to most of my pranks, even painting Beacon lime-green didn’t get more than a grimace and comment about color choices. At least his reactions to the items I’m selling in the Black Market are entertaining. Especially now that I’ve been going and stealing things from Atlas and other places to put up for sale, it was worth selling the prototype tank that cheaply just to see the look on his face when it was used during the annual tournament. Still things are rather boring and I’m almost out of anime to rewatch. All that’s left is Magic Kaito 1412, hopefully that relieves the monotony…

    Actually now that I’ve watched this my skill cards were Illusion and Thievery, I can probably pull that stuff off easily. I’ll have to actually force people to beef up security though, the current stuff is abysmal. In the meantime, maybe the actual thieves have better security…

    But I digress, if you’ve found th-


    Past this point burning makes it impossible to read.




    Snippets From A Random Mew’s Blog

    Uggggh, why did it take this long to get the internet working, it’s been like sixty years, you’d think that with dust we’d figure this out earlier but noooooooo.

    Turns out that keeping up with my favorite blogs while hunting grimm is a good way to nearly get eaten, I need to work on that.

    Apparently nobody knows what a Mew is, turns out the game I found it in was all a dream. WELL WE CAN’T HAVE THAT! Making the game now, gonna call it Pokemon and everything.

    Goddamnit, I just realized there are no pomegranates anymore. Pomegranate juice was my favorite drink. I’m gonna go cry for a bit…

    I know we’ve had the Internet for more than ten years now, but it’s still too soon for microtransactions. Gonna need to figure out who came up with them and kidnap them, wonder if I can outsource that…?

    I might run The Black Market, but I’m not responsible for any of the poseurs making their own, much lamer, black markets. They’re filled with inferior gear too. If anyone would rather go to my place I have Doors to it everywhere, just keep looking.

    To those of you who think I’m somehow related to the odd man that appeared in front of a weather reporter, asked what year it was, and danced off after hearing the date a few years back you’re sorely mistaken. Any resemblance is merely a coincidence and I did not steal my many corporate ideas from the future.

    I feel like releasing Back to the Future now, no particular reason.

    You know, for such a ‘brilliant, high-tech’ military city you’d think Atlas would have better security systems, I don’t think anyone has so much as noticed me and I’m not even trying very hard.

    Got an order for some swords made out of dust gems last week, apparently nobody thought to do dustgem sculptures/jewelry either. I would say I’m making an Etsy page about this, but Etsy doesn’t exist either. Fixing that.

    The man that looked suspiciously like me who appeared on the morning weather report, swore upon hearing the date, and vanished obviously couldn’t have been me. I have alibis in no less than six separate places around the world. Simultaneously. So stop trying to insist I did it.

    The Seolfors seem surprisingly on top of the list of things I’m pretty sure I dreamed, not to mention the merchandise. Too bad the Lightsabers don’t cut, they look cool though.

    I have found out that a Huntsman Academy called SCAM exists and I haven’t been invited to teach. I find this offensive and will seek to remedy this immediately.

    Apparently SCAM is owned by the Seolfors and they’re paying with stock options, therefore I must immediately reverse my stance on microtransactions because I’m making money off of them.

    To assuage rumors about my ‘past self’ appearing on the news again I have bought the news station and turned it into a laboratory for my nephew that looks a lot like me. I promise this is in no way suspicious.

    There have been some questions about what I could teach, they didn’t have anyone teaching thievery skills and how to apply them in combat. When I’m done the academy will finally live up to its name.




    “Bzzzzzz Bzzzzzzz”

    My ears twitch as I look down at the screen that popped up on Archive.

    “Hmm, that time of year already. I believe this is the year Ruby is supposed to finally arrive as well.”

    Hopping up I stretch before my form wavers like smoke, collapsing in on itself until resolving into a tiny fox, the ears all that remain to identify who I was. Almost as an afterthought the umbrella that I was using as a staff hits the ground before popping into an orange hat and landing on my head. Giggling slightly at how awesome that must’ve looked I fade from sight in the office only to appear on the walls of Beacon, or Bacon as the sign still says, apparently they haven’t bothered to change it back.

    Hopping down I begin to pad through the halls of the school, nobody so much as batting an eye at my presence after all these years. Some of the rumors that popped up around that are incredibly amusing, I’m particularly fond of the one about me secretly being a teacher like professor McGonagall from Harry Potter. It’s even technically true, though I currently have a clone subbing in for me at S.C.A.M. It probably doesn’t hurt that I encouraged it by hardly ever showing up around Ozpin and hiding an orange hat in his office whenever possible.

    Arriving at my destination I push open the door to the Teacher’s Lounge and trot in, admiring the vaulted room overlooking the courtyard for all of one second before a teacher suddenly jumps from his position. Knocking his chair over in his haste the grizzled man’s arm shifts into several with extend-o extensions, all of which shoot out for my head. Were I not expecting this he might have had some success with stealing my hat, as it was it took a use of Detect to prevent him from touching it. The various faculty members of Beacon watch this byplay as I seem to slip through his grabs, causing him to bang his head on the door, and take a seat on top of a nearby shelf, earning a tirade in full Scottish brogue.

    “Gahdamn cheatin’ vulpines, ah’ll get a look at that mechashift one o’ these days!”
    “Now, now Mullberry, you know what happened last time you pushed it.” Port chuckles,“anyways it seems our resident fox has arrived before Glynda for once. I do wonder what’s keeping her?”

    “I believe she mentioned something about Ozpin recruiting a new student or two and needing to put things in order.” Ann, the redheaded stealth and security teacher, clarifies. “Heavens knows why, I think he might be set on having an extra team this year.”

    “Yes, that is part of why we’re having this meeting.” Oobleck pushes his glasses up and looks at the door. “I suppose it wouldn’t hurt much to start now, Ozpin and Glynda should be more informed than any of us after all. Ann, I believe you have the files for the new students?”

    Ann nods and begins passing out folders. “Yes, I know we talked about the students transferring in last meeting, but these are the students that have gone through nonstandard admission processes. I’ve included what Ozpin deigned to provide as well as what I could dig up on my own.”

    “Hold on a tick.” Port begins, waving a folder labeled ‘Jaune Arc’. “Wasn’t this blighter in the other pile?”

    Ann nods again. “Yes, well it seems Ozpin has asked us to ignore the obvious fakeness of the transcripts, thus I included it again so we can actually go over it instead of making fun of him.”

    I snort from the top of the shelf, I stole one of those and it’s amazing how he thought the story would hold up under any kind of speculation. The achievements section alone read like what I imagine Gilderoy Lockhearts’ books would be like.

    “I suppose if he’s incompetent he’ll just get eliminated in the Forest.” Ann sighs, “though I do wonder why he’s insisting we do this instead of just tossing him in beforehand.”

    “Hah, it’ll serve tha lad right fer tryin this.” Mullberry laughs, “tha blasted fox’ll save im if anythin too bad happens.” He says with a glance in my direction, “what abou’ this one, Seolfor I think.”

    Ann speaks up. “He and one Miss Schnee are both from influential families in Atlas, I’m rather surprised you haven’t heard of their families.”

    “So they are from those families then, I assumed it was just a coincidence. Let’s see Miss Schnee is homeschooled, and Mr. Seolfor is…” Oobleck pauses, “is it just me or is the school named Scam?”

    “It is,” Thumbelina Peach finally speaks up from behind the decorative centerpiece. “Though I’m friends with a few graduates and the education is anything but. While it may be company-run they offer an education comparable to Beacon.” She considers something, “actually I don’t know why either of them would be coming here, neither family traditionally goes outside of Atlas if they can help it.”

    “In both cases the families seem to want them to socialize more, additionally according to the transcripts each is a genius in their own right and they likely feel the need to show off.” Ann speculates.

    I attempt to shift and get a better look at the presumed transcripts only to sigh as they’re shuffled away. Ahh well, I can always Snatch a copy later. Though I am curious about Seolfor, the boy seems to be avoiding me in my duties as a Professor of SCAM for some reason, it can’t be my stellar reputation as a fair and just professor that in no way psychologically tortures his students. The fact that he’s here is also odd since I don’t remember a Seolfor in the first episode of RWBY at all, and with a resume like that there’s no way he wouldn’t be an important character. I would put it down to my interference, but nothing I was doing before seemed to affect plot characters, or if it did the world butterflied it away. Someone to keep an eye on in any case.

    “Both of them already know their semblances, Miss Schnee has the usual Schnee Glyphs, however Mr. Seolfor has the ability to turn things into toys and back. Miss Schnee is seemingly quite accomplished with hers and Mr. Seolfor apparently tends to carry around an armory or two.” Ann looks at Mullberry, “Mr. Seolfor also has an advanced Mechashift arm, you are not to bother him about it Mullberry.”

    Mulberry looks indignant, “now, does that sound like something ah’d do?”

    The rest of the table simply deadpans at him then looks to me, I make sure to preen under the attention.

    Mulberry shrinks back under their gazes, “fine, it willnae be ah problem.”

    Ann holds up a folder labeled Lorem Ipsum, “Next is a bit more interesting, Lorem seems to have been operating unofficially as a mercenary for years now. As far as I can tell he’s a child from one of the lost villages that learned combat in the field. He just showed up one day at one of the outposts and has been taking odd jobs ever since. Ozpin managed to convince him to come here and get certified, ostensibly so someone so talented doesn’t make a stupid mistake and die, though I think the argument he used was more along the lines of being able to charge more for his services.”

    Huh, I remember this guy, he stumbled into my shop awhile back and put in a request for some blades made entirely of dust crystal. They were fun to make and gave me the idea to stock sculptures made of dust crystal, though a lot of people tend to look at them oddly rather than buy them.

    Oobleck is the first to finish going over the file, though he waits for the others to look up before commenting. “It seems that he has little need for most of us, for someone with no official license he appears remarkably competent.”

    Mulberry just laughs, “looks like we’ve got ah ringer in this year! Ah cannae hardly wait tah get ta see this semblance a’ his.”

    Thumbelina nods along, “I must agree, it seems a tad unfair to the rest of them. Having someone like him on a team will definitely shift things in their favor.”

    Port takes a more considering look. “I don’t think it will be any worse than having one of the geniuses on a team. Additionally it seems we will need to focus on teamwork rather more with him since by all accounts he has exclusively worked alone.”

    Ann nods, “something else to consider is how we might need him to sit out for certain team activities where he would vastly unbalance things, I have a few ideas on that, but they need to wait till we actually see the teams.” She shuffles to the next folder. “Next up is Jaune Arc, I did a full background check this time and it seems he was not lying about his name. Though why an Arc would resort to such obviously forged transcripts…”

    Thumbelina is the first to speak this time. “That is concerning, if he had changed his name I could see it being an attempt to distance himself from the name and accomplishments of his sisters. But this, I can’t fathom why he would utilize such obviously forged transcripts.”

    Port is next to comment, “it could be that he was homeschooled in such a way that he has no transcripts? But no, even then it would be a simple matter for his parents to provide an overview…”

    I tune out the rest of his speculation while thinking, this is the guy that doesn’t have his aura unlocked, right? I might want to find him tonight and lead him to the shop so he can get something to prevent being nearly killed so much. I wonder, what would be a good item for him…

    “The speculation is baseless until we actually meet the boy, now onto the final one.” It seems discussion has concluded while I was considering things, Ann is currently holding the final folder.”Yache Ruhm.”

    Glancing down at the folder I see what can only be a spider faunus, which is odd both because I didn’t think spider faunus were a thing, and because she seems to have more than one animal feature. At least I know she’s definitely new and not just unmentioned in the original story for some reason, someone like that is tier one protagonist material.

    “Unfortunately we know almost nothing about her, Ozpin and Glynda have been rather tightlipped other than she was found in the forest and that she shouldn’t be provoked. I do have a working theory as to why that last bit was important though.”
    At this Ann holds up her Scroll and shows a short video, in it the Emerald Forest seems to have quite a few new canyons. Also it appears to be slightly on fire. As we watch a Beam of rainbow light is shown making a new rift through the trees.

    “As you can see, her Semblance appears to allow the use of some kind of Wave Motion Cannon. I recommend exercising caution during any training exercises and potentially giving her extra lessons on control should it become a problem.”

    With that slightly sobering note the meeting continues on into minutia I don’t truly care about. I am left wondering at the direction things will go now that the Plot seems to have started. Ozpin and Glynda end up arriving a few hours late with news of new students, but that should just be Ruby so I take my leave to prepare for the coming storms.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2020
  2. Threadmarks: Magenta Trailer (Kamen's Intro)
    Jonakhensu

    Jonakhensu I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Magenta Trailer (Kamen's Intro)

    A silvery veil appeared long enough for a teen with brown hair and a strange belt to be shoved through in such a way that he crushes a beowolf’s skull with his foot.

    “Should have known I’d be put somewhere other than Fuyuki… Onore Dikeido!” he shouted with a groan, then prepared to defend himself from the rest of the pack. “And dammit that feels like self hate to say now… Come on you bastards and get what’s coming to ya!”




    One year after arriving on Remnant

    “Okay, so Tsukasa wasn’t trying to send me here, got it.” He muttered to himself as he read a letter from Jump-chan. “Not that it does me any good, because I’m still stuck here in the WRONG GOD-DAMNED REALITY!” He swung his fist at a rock, shattering it. Then he heard a series of roars. And howls. And was that a bunch of squeals? “And of course the Grimm are here now…” he sighed before getting to killing them. ‘Dammit I really need to find a settlement…’




    One year and three weeks after arriving on Remnant

    ”FINAL FORM RIDE: BL-BL-BL-BLADE!” “Wait shit Blade’s FFR is a sword!” he yelped as his body twisted itself into a big ass sword. “This is honestly rather infuriating. I have an itch on my nose that I cannot scratch at the moment.” A few moments later he managed to end the effect of the Final Form Ride card. “Right, not doing that again unless I have a nearby ally that specializes in big ass swords. I wonder how old Yatsuhashi is at this point..? Alright, let’s try one that won’t leave me helpless, maybe Ryuki’s? Or maybe Agito’s…”




    Two years and five months after arriving on Remnant

    “Well this is unfortunate…” He said, looking out on the settlement he’d found. It was in ruins, and from what he could tell it had been like that for months at least… The state of the bodies he’d buried supported that, and he sighed. “Might as well stay here for the night… not like there’s anyone that can say no…” He made his way to the nearest building to the makeshift graveyard and went to sleep.




    Three years after arriving on Remnant

    “Dammit… just another failed settlement…” He grumbled. “How long until I reach one that’s still going…?” Hearing another series of howls and such he sighed. “Once more into the fray.” He said, punching the head off the first beowulf to reach him, then using its dissipating body as a club for as long as he can.




    Four years and six months after arriving on Remnant

    “Alright, finally… A settlement…” He mumbled, quite exhausted from his time in the wilds. “Need food… and sleep please…” He said to the people at the gate. “Been out there… for weeks… I think… not sure…” ‘Better to say weeks than the full truth…’ He thought as he was helped to the town hall. ‘Not sure how long I’ve actually been here anyway…’




    Four years and eleven months after arriving on Remnant

    “Let’s see… how to get money…” He pondered aloud. “I could do mercenary work… Or bodyguard work… Not interested in any of the less legal options… I’ve got an idea!” He made his way to where the bounty hunters got their jobs in the area, and there he met his most terrifying foe yet… one he could not slay with mere weapons…




    Five years after arriving on Remnant

    ‘Dammit why does being a bounty hunter have to be so hard?’ he thought, irritated. ‘I don’t exactly have documentation for this world, and I apparently need a Hunter’s License to actually do that without having to fill out a mountain of paperwork. I am curious about that blog though...‘ His victory would be short lived, as he needed to take another job…




    Five years and three months after arriving on Remnant

    “I… wha… how?! I was just walking down to the grocery store!” He muttered incredulously. “How did I get to Menagerie of all places…?” With a bewildered look on his face he tried to get to the docks to leave, but as he departed the shack he was in, he was blasted in the face with a snow drift. “Okay, this is… getting weirder and weirder… Am I on a goddamn GLACIER NOW?!”




    Six years after arriving on Remnant

    “What the hell is with all these White Fang members…?” He sighed as he knocked out a particularly tall bear faunus. “Seriously, he’s the twentieth one I’ve knocked out. What is so damn important that so many of you are coming here?”

    “Damn it get out of our way!” A tiger faunus yelled as she leapt at him… and hit his fist with her face, much to his bemusement.

    “I guess I’m not gonna be going to that open invitation party…” He grumbled as he knocked out the last one. “Going to need to let the authorities know and stay to give a statement…”




    Six years and five months after arriving on Remnant

    “Let’s see… need to find this guy and bring him in alive…” He mumbled to himself. “Then I’ll need to fill out the paperwork and I’ll have my pay… Shouldn’t be too hard.” Dropping down into the middle of the group of goons and knocking them out? Easy. Pinning the target to the wall? Trivial. Getting back to the bounty office in a timely manner? Apparently the hardest thing ever. “Dammit what the hell is going on…?”




    Seven years and four months after arriving on Remnant

    “That… what… why… and the petunias, how could they do that to the petunias?!” He shuddered at what he’d witnessed after he got lost. “I don’t want to know what they were planning with that horseshoe crab. I’ll be happy to never have to know.”




    Eight years after arriving on Remnant

    He hummed as he made his way to where he found a secret entrance a year ago. ‘I wonder if the order I made at that surprisingly convenient shop is done yet?’ he mused, happy that the surprisingly young shopkeeper was willing to take special orders. ’Swords made of Dust will be a hilarious addition to my Reality Marble.’ He tried not to chuckle, he really did. He did so anyway. ‘Unlimited Blade Works is going to be fun to unleash when the time comes… I wonder how the people of Remnant will react to me rejecting reality and substituting my soul?'




    Eight years and two months after arriving on Remnant

    While on a walk through Atlas he realized that there was something in his neck. Pulling it out, he looked at it. “When the hell did I get hit with a dart?” Taking a sniff, he continued with “Correction, when the hell did I get hit with a tranquilizer dart?” Thinking back over the last three or four hours, he realized that he’d run past Malachite Seolfor, one of the most kidnapped people in Atlas. ‘Maybe I should have introduced myself with the dart sticking out of my neck, that would have been fun… wonder how he’d react...’ He chuckled at the thought, then went back to his walk, only to walk right into a tree. “Really? What the hell?! How does this happen?!” Grumbling he made his way out of the forest, not noticing the red eyed bird that saw him arrive…




    Eight years, three months, three weeks, and six days after arriving on Remnant

    “This is ridiculous!” He shouts as he steps out of a hut in Vacuo, when he was in a shop in Vale beforehand. “I step out of my room in Atlas, end up in the middle of Mistral, go into a restaurant there, find myself in a bakery in Vale, and now I’m in Vacuo?! What next, the Grimmlands?”




    Eight years and four months after arriving on Remnant

    “Me and my big mouth…” He muttered, slicing a Beowolf in half. “Well I think I can say I’m the most well traveled person on Remnant…” He said as he cut down another Ursa. “Not that it really helps when I have no idea how it happens!” Throwing his sword into the skull of an approaching Boarbatusk, he took the opportunity to make his retreat from the apparently endless horde of Grimm in this wasteland. He found himself in an alleyway, narrowly having avoided tripping into an open dumpster. “Huh. You know what? Not gonna complain this time.” He muttered, unamused with what happened even still. “Need to find somewhere to stay now. Get some food too…”




    Eight years and seven months after arriving on Remnant

    “Alright… Got my stuff, or at least what I don’t keep in several lockboxes that are buried pretty much all over the place, time to go get some work to pay for rent and food.” He sighed, heading to the bounty board. “Wonder what I’ll be doing this time… Doubt it’ll be anything really big, those jobs go to hunter teams…”
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2020
  3. Threadmarks: Phosphor Trailer (Jonakhensu's Intro)
    Jonakhensu

    Jonakhensu I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Phosphor Trailer (Jonakhensu's Trailer)​

    “And what have we learned?” a man asked, leaning over the hospital bed.

    “Is this really the time, Turq?” a woman asked testily. “Malachite is still recovering after surgery.”

    Turq Seolfor shrugged. “He lost his arm while in a restricted section of the factory. It’d be a shame if he hadn’t learned anything, even if they did give him a new one suspiciously quickly.” He turned to look back at his son. “Well?”

    “Make sure you ask if you’ll be awake for any trauma before signing,” Malachite dutifully replied. He paused for a moment before adding, “What do they have me on? I mean, I feel great, but I didn’t mean to say that.”

    “Nothing that should make you delusional,” Turq noted. “Tell me, son, what do you remember of what happened?”

    Malachite sighed, knowing lying to his father would be useless. His Semblance ensured that. “I thought I was being clever and decided losing an arm would be worth the extra points I’d get from it, especially after the others pointed out I could make the weapon I wanted on my own time. I wasn’t expecting to actually remember losing my arm, though.”

    “What are you talking about?” Malachite’s mother, Parian, asked.

    “I think I just got the memories of a past life,” Malachite admitted. “When I was expecting to wake up with this life as vague memories instead. I remember filling out a form to help in this life. It’s a bit garbled, but I think I’m supposed to become a Hunter. I’m still your son, I just have a… few extra memories.”

    “That can’t be right,” Parian insisted. Turning to her husband, she pleaded, “Right?”

    “Malachite certainly believes it to be true,” Turq stated. “Either he is delusional, in which case he needs psychiatric help, or he really is remembering a previous life, and we should support him to the best of our ability.”

    Parian stared into Malachite’s silver eyes and asked, “Is that why you have your grandmother’s eyes? No one else in the family has them.”

    Malachite shrugged. “Probably. Either that or recessive genes. I can’t remember if I knew how they worked, though I know they’re important somehow. I think they also mean we’re probably related to someone… which I just realized is a really stupid thing to say. Of course we’re related to people.” He paused before adding, “On a completely different topic, I’ve got a bunch of ideas that should help both of our companies.”

    Turq blinked before asking a very pertinent question. “Exactly what sort of memories do you have?”

    Malachite smirked and said, “About thirty years worth in a world with a completely different tech base and a lot of different ideas in stories and games. I’m sure we can find something to do with it.” He would have continued, but he was caught by a sudden yawn.

    “We’ll talk about this later,” Parian decided. “For now, get your rest.”

    “That’s right,” Turq agreed. “We’ll have a lot to talk about when you’re recovered.”

    “Get some rest,” Parian said soothingly, again. She ruined the effect by adding,”Your sister still wants to have a word with you about running off like that.”

    “Shit, I forgot about Sabah,” Malachite groaned, rising slightly from the bed for the sole purpose of flopping back down forlornly. “She’s going to kill me.” A moment later, after reflecting on the names of his mother and sister, he added, “and the universe is a troll,” before refusing to explain.




    It had only been a few days since Malachite had gotten out of the hospital with his prosthetic arm when he decided it was time for another conversation with his parents. “Mother, Father,” he began, speaking formally to show that this was to be a serious discussion, “we need to talk to General Ironwood.”

    Turq cocked his head as he studied his son. “I can see you think you’re telling the truth, but whatever for? Is this about the new ideas you were mentioning earlier?”

    “Not exactly,” Malachite admitted with a wince. “We probably should still bring those up at some point, but this is a bit more critical.” He paused for a moment to figure out how to best make his case. “I was a bit overwhelmed before, what with the traumatic amputation and all, but there was another drawback I took that we should probably deal with.”

    Parian’s hand flew to her face in shock. “Something worse than losing an arm?” she demanded in concern.

    Malachite shook his head. “Not immediately, no, which is why I didn’t think about it before. Those designs I showed you made me think of it.” He took a moment to clear his throat before continuing, “No, the drawback I took is called ‘Clapped in Irons.’ Basically, it means that General Ironwood is going to grow concerned about the changes I’m causing in his world and about what my intentions are.”

    “That’s really none of his business,” Parian asserted.

    “It really is, though,” Malachite insisted. “He’s the General of the Atlesian military. It’s his job to be professionally paranoid.”

    “That’s… not how I would have put it,” Turq commented, “but it is not an inaccurate description.” Looking at Malachite closely, he asked, “What were you thinking?”

    “He doesn’t like unknowns,” Malachite began, “it’s that whole ‘knowing is half the battle’ thing, so I was thinking I should just tell him some of what is going on, convince him I’m not going to be a threat to Atlas and the world at large.” With a wince, he added, “Warn him about some other people who might show up eventually.”

    “I’m not sure this is a good idea,” Parian said. “Once you tell him everything, what’s to stop him from imprisoning you anyway? For your own safety, if nothing else.”

    “Well, first, I don’t plan on telling him everything,” Malachite replied. “Hell, I don’t even know everything. One of my drawbacks made sure of that. It’s just a good thing you’re my parents, or I probably wouldn’t even know about Ironwood… which would have been bad.”

    Turq nodded his understanding before asking, “Then what do you plan on telling him?”

    “Mostly that I’m here, I know some things I probably shouldn’t, that there are others coming to help out, and that we have the best intentions for people in mind,” Malachite listed off on his fingers. “Oh, and if you could activate my Aura, a demonstration of my Semblance should convince him that trying to keep me prisoner is a bad idea.”

    “You already know what your Semblance will be?” Turq asked in surprise. “Was that another thing you came up with?”

    “Yeah…” Malachite trailed off, thinking about how to best put it. “It’s a bit weird and situationally really powerful.”

    “And it’ll help keep you out of prison?” Parian pushed.

    “It should. It’s a bit hard to keep someone in a jail where the bars are made out of wrapping paper tubes.”

    “You’ll be able to do that?!” Turq burst out, incredulously.

    Malachite shrugged. “No idea, but it really wouldn’t surprise me. Like I said, it’s a bit weird.”




    It had taken another week to set up an appointment with General Ironwood. He was a rather busy man, understandably, and Turq had suggested timing the appointment for early in the morning. Hopefully, that would place the meeting before too many terrible and stressful things happened, leaving the man in a better mood for the discussion. They were hoping to keep it from becoming an actual interrogation, after all.

    Turq and Malachite were waiting outside Ironwood’s office, having gotten there early just in case the general decided to see them early. It wouldn’t do to make the man wait if they could help it, after all. Turq was wearing his usual, bright blue suit, a lump of turquoise at his throat holding his bolo tie in place. Malachite was wearing his best suit, a dark green that went well with his dark green, nearly black, hair.

    Finally, the secretary called, “Mr. Seolfor, the General will see you now.”

    “Thank you,” Turq said, standing. Malachite stood and followed his father into the office. The office was spartan, showing the efficiency the Atlesian army prided itself for. The walls were shades of white and the desk appeared to be stainless steel. The only bits of color were the books set neatly in shelves against one wall. The General was equally immaculate, wearing a white uniform, the only nod toward color coming from his grey vest and red tie.

    “Ah, Seolfor, good to see you again,” Ironwood greeted them. Gesturing toward Malachite, he added, “And who is this?”

    “General,” Malachite’s father returned. “It is good to see you as well. I believe you’ve met my son, Malachite?”

    “Yes, in passing,” Ironwood agreed. “At the last party Jacques Schnee held, I believe.”

    “It is nice to meet you, Sir,” Malachite replied politely. He remembered that party. The only mildly interesting part had been when Weiss Schnee had sung. The girl was pretty and had a great voice, but he couldn’t really speak for her personality. That would have required her to actually display one. The real question there was, is she really that cold, or is she hiding her true self due to politics? He rather assumed the latter, but, based on what he’d seen of the elder Schnee, he could be wrong.

    Malachite was broken out of his thoughts by Ironwood asking, “What brings you here today? I wasn’t expecting another update on any developments for another three months.”

    “I’m not here about that, actually,” Turq began. “First, you know what my Semblance is, correct?”

    Ironwood nodded. “As best as we’ve been able to determine, you are capable of telling when someone is lying to you.”

    “That is, essentially, correct,” Turq agreed. “At least in so far as it applies to what we need to discuss.” He looked toward Malachite for a moment before continuing, “I bring it up because I need to stress this to you. No matter how outlandish it may sound, my son is not lying.”

    “As you say,” Ironwood allowed. “Now,” he turned to Malachite, “what did you have to say?”

    “Sir,” Malachite began, finding himself suddenly nervous. He took a second to wet his lips and swallow a few times, trying to bring moisture to his suddenly dry mouth. This course of action had made so much sense when he came up with it, even before he had chosen to take the drawback that made this meeting a necessity, but, now that he was sitting before the man in real life, all he could think about was how easily Ironwood could disappear him at the moment. Sure, his Semblance might be able to get him out of a cell, but he hadn’t even had Aura a week ago, and he wasn’t confident he could do anything if Ironwood decided it’d be best to put a bullet between his eyes.

    “Speak up, lad,” Ironwood prodded, not unkindly. “I’m not going to bite your head off.”

    “Ah, right, sorry about that,” Malachite babbled before marshalling his will. “I apologize, Sir. It only just registered how badly this meeting could go for me if I mess it up.” He took a deep breath, continuing before Ironwood or his father could say anything. “I am here because you don’t trust easily, and what I can do and what I know could easily make me a threat.”

    Ironwood leaned back in his seat, raising an eyebrow skeptically. “Please excuse me if I don’t take that at face value. You are, what, thirteen?”

    “Twelve, Sir,” Malachite corrected. “Or over thirty, or over forty. It depends on how you want to look at it.”

    Ironwood leaned forward. “Explain.”

    ‘Here goes nothing,’ Malachite thought to himself. “Roughly two weeks ago, I woke up in the hospital, having just had my arm amputated. That isn’t important, though. What is important is that I woke up with the memories of my past life. Part of those memories involved me filling out a form, determining what this life would be like.”

    “That seems… unlikely,” Ironwood stated.

    “And, yet, my Semblance tells me my son is not lying,” Turq asserted.

    “So you say,” Ironwood allowed. “Assuming what you say is accurate, why bring this to me?”

    “Part of the form was about drawbacks, which could be used to purchase additional benefits,” Malachite explained. “Benefits like a stronger Semblance, a better weapon, or, for instance, a very particular eye color.” He leaned forward slightly and gestured toward his eyes.

    “You have silver eyes,” Ironwood muttered. “I suppose you think that old fairy tale is true, then?”

    Malachite shrugged. “I don’t really know,” he admitted. “I took another drawback that means I don’t know as much about this world as the others. That said, my eyes have to be important, somehow, just based off of how expensive they were.”

    Ironwood’s eyes narrowed again. “Others? There are more of you coming?”

    The boy nodded. “Yes, I think four others got caught up in this, though I don’t remember all the details, and I don’t know when they’re going to be getting to Remnant. Some of them could be here already.”

    “Hmph, I’ll have to see about tracking them down later. Now, what was this about another world?”

    “My previous life was on a different world,” Malachite explained. “It worked on completely different principles. For instance, Dust didn’t exist there, so they had to find other ways to do things.”

    The eyebrow rose again. “Such as?”

    “Off the top of my head?” Malachite began. “Multiple ways to generate power, better communications technology, and arguably better aeronautics.”

    There was a moment of silence as the general thought through what he had been told. “I see,” he finally said. “Yes, you could easily be quite the threat with just that knowledge, though you also claimed to have taken multiple drawbacks to increase your abilities.” He stood, clasping his hands behind his back while looking down at Malachite. “Now, tell me why I shouldn’t lock you up for the safety of the world.”

    This was about what Malachite had been expecting, so he took a deep breath and made his case. “I really do want to make the world a better place. What I know could be used to lessen our dependence on Dust, and the aeronautic designs could help with reaction times when Grimm attack outposts. Look, back on my world we had a group called DARPA. It was basically a research arm for the military, and they came up with some really impressive ideas, like a system to instantly know where you are, anywhere on the planet, or an information communication system that made the world smaller than ever. If you’ve got anything similar, I could toss ideas to them.”

    “Congratulations, you have convinced me to not have you killed,” Ironwood bluntly stated as he sat back down. “Now, why shouldn’t I keep you imprisoned? Even if comfortably?”

    “Right… carrot didn’t work,” Malachite muttered. “Well, I am supposed to meet up with the others at some point, and… we’re not really sure which of us wins in a contest of strength, but we’re probably all up there in the kiloton range… which I just realized is a reference you probably won’t understand. Simply put, you probably don’t want to fight them. Even if you win, the collateral damage would be… impressive.”

    Before Ironwood could say anything, Malachite continued, “And despite all of that, I would much rather work with you than against you. The Grimm need to be defeated, and I want to protect people. I won’t be able to do any of that if I’m stuck in a cell.”

    “And I cannot let someone who claims to be as much of a threat as you go without supervision,” Ironwood stated.

    “I’m not actually against supervision,” Malachite offered. “At least, to a reasonable degree.”

    “And what do you consider reasonable?” Ironwood asked, in a tone that showed he was humouring the question, not seriously considering the idea.

    Malachite understood where the man was coming from. He wouldn’t take someone who looked like him that seriously, either. Some of the perks he had taken probably weren’t helping matters, either. “I’ll leave figuring that out to you and my father. I’m sure he’ll do a better job of negotiating than I would. About the only thing I have to insist on is that I’ll be going to Beacon when the time comes.”

    “I should insist on you attending Atlas Academy.”

    “Sorry, Sir, this comes down to that form, again. I selected Beacon, and I’m not sure I would do well in a military academy. My Semblance might be impressive, but I’m sure it doesn’t look it, and I must admit, I’m not sure how well I’d do with that level of discipline.”

    “And I think that is where I’ll step in,” Turq cut in smoothly before Ironwood had a chance. “I fully support my son in this. I am sure he will grow much more as a person away from the politics of Atlas. And don’t try to tell me political games aren’t played there.”

    Ironwood sighed. “I wish I could deny that, but I’ve had to sit through too many meetings to do so.” The two men began discussing what level of surveillance would be acceptable. Malachite watched, knowing this would greatly affect his future. Hopefully his father would ask for input before accepting anything too burdensome.




    “Son, I think we need to have another talk,” Turq began, watching as his son looked through a surprisingly large stack of paperwork.

    Malachite looked up from the reports the professors at Seolfor College for Annihilating Monsters had submitted and sighed. “It’s about the school, isn’t it?” He had greatly underestimated how much work running a school would be. Why had he decided on making it large enough to essentially envelope the settlement, again? Oh, that’s right… because it’d be fun later on, when all of the drawbacks he had used to pay for everything wore off.

    “It is,” Turq confirmed. “You have to admit, being the headmaster of a huntsman academy at your age is a bit strange.” He paused a moment before adding, “Especially when you’re also a student there. Didn’t you also say you were going to be going to Beacon in a few years?”

    “I will be,” Malachite agreed. “One of the advantages to running my own school is that it’s really easy to falsify the transcripts to say I haven’t graduated and become a full-fledged huntsman yet.”

    “That’s true,” Turq agreed. “But I still don’t see why your grandfather stipulated you’d be made headmaster at thirteen.”

    Malachite rubbed his temples before replying. “I blame Jump-chan.”

    “Jump-chan?”

    “It’s the generic name given to the entities that make the kinds of deals I made to get here,” Malachite explained. “The other name for them is Random Omnipotent Being, or ROB, though ROBs tend to be less helpful… which is why they’re also called Random Omnipotent Bastards.”

    “I’ll take your word for it. Just don’t let your mother hear you using language like that. Now, how is that an explanation,” Turq asked again.

    “One of the options I took makes me the headmaster of a huntsman academy,” Malachite explained. "So, much like my eyes, the world had to provide one for me.” He sighed and added, “I wasn’t given a choice of what it’d be called. Honestly, I’m just glad we have our own hedge school, rather than suddenly running Haven or something.”

    “I see,” Turq lied rather badly before hurriedly changing the subject. “What are you working on there, then?”

    “Applications,” Malachite replied. “Since we’re something of a combination combat school and huntsman academy, we need more instructors, since a large portion of our students haven’t had training before. Luckily, there’s a lot of former military and retired huntsmen looking for work. Unfortunately, I need to weed out the ones who are obvious bigots.”

    “I take it you’d like me to help with the interviews?” Turq offered, raising one eyebrow.

    “Yes, please,” Malachite all but begged. “I mean, some shouldn’t be too bad,” he held up a folder to demonstrate. “Take Colonel Mustard, here. Great service record in the Atlesian army until he was dishonorably discharged last year. Apparently, refusing to use force to disperse a peaceful protest gets you kicked out of the military.”

    “I have a hard time seeing General Ironwood doing that.”

    “He didn’t,” Malachite continued. “Apparently, he’d been quietly campaigning to allow faunus to become commissioned officers. Some politicians didn’t approve, so out he went.”

    “If he made it to colonel with those views, he must be extremely competent,” Turq noted.

    “That’s what I was thinking,” Malachite agreed. Gesturing to another pile he added, “I’d also like it if you could sit in on some of the student interviews. There’s a lot of Faunus in there with criminal records. A lot of it looks like trumped up charges, but… I’d rather we not train people who want to be terrorists.”

    Turq nodded. “Especially with how often you’ve been getting kidnapped recently.”

    “That’s not my fault!” Malachite exclaimed indignantly. He thought for a moment before adding, “Alright, it might be my fault. Stupid drawbacks...”

    “Still, I do wonder why the White Fang keeps sending their green recruits after you.”

    “I have to assume it’s some weird mix of the different perks I have. Considering how many of them will turn into upstanding citizens with a good job, it’s probably for the best, though.”

    Turq considered that for a moment before adding, “You know that isn’t going to help the school’s reputation, correct?”

    “Oh, I know,” Malachite agreed. “One of the drawbacks I took to make the school better later on causes it to have a bad reputation no matter what we do, so I might as well do what I want, anyway.”




    “Thanks for letting me go,” Malachite said as the foppish criminal began loosening his bonds from where he had been securely tied on a surprisingly comfortable bed.

    He and his mother had travelled to Vale for the opening of a new toy store, and he’d gotten kidnapped again. Over all, other than restraining him, the fop and his young sidekick had treated him surprisingly well. Other than the initial blow, that had come out of nowhere and had knocked him out, they hadn’t roughed him up at all, and they had even supplied him food. Granted, it was fairly basic, out of the can soup, but it was better than he was used to during these situations.

    “Well, little man,” his kidnapper began, “it’s like this. Somebody offered me a lot of money to take you hostage. And, since my partner and I like to eat, we took the job.” He moved to the next tie and continued. “They stupidly got themselves caught, so they’re not going to be paying us. No pay, no reason to keep you.”

    “You could try ransoming me yourselves,” Malachite pointed out, perhaps unwisely.

    The redheaded criminal paused from his untying to pull out a cigar, gesturing with it as he replied, “We could,” he admitted, “but I like to think of myself as something of a gentleman thief. Will I kidnap someone when hired to do so? Obviously, the answer is yes, or you wouldn’t be here right now. Would I try to kill someone fighting me? If you want to play with the big boys, you need to be ready for real world consequences. But kidnapping just to ransom a kid? That’s pretty low class.” He flicked out a lighter with his other hand, igniting the cigar before continuing. “When you’re hired to do a job, it’s just business, and not following through with a deal hurts your reputation. So does kidnapping kids off the street. It’s a low class con, and I’m far too classy for that.”

    Malachite nodded. “I get it,” he agreed. “The White Fang try to kidnap me all the time, and they usually have no idea what to do afterward. They definitely aren’t sending their best and brightest, that’s for sure, even if most of them do make great students.”

    “Right,” the criminal agreed. “If they were better trained, they would be leading the gang or doing more skilled missions, like sabotage. Instead, they waste what meager talents they have going after the lowest of low hanging bees nests. Nothing gets the cops in an uproar like an obvious kidnapping.”

    “Exactly,” Malachite said companionably as he sat up, untying the last of the bindings. “Though, I’ve got to say, as far as kidnappings go, yours was one of the most pleasant. I’ll be sure to recommend your services to any kidnappees I come across.”

    The white clad villain chuckled. “You know what, you’re all right, kid. If you didn’t have a stupidly rich and powerful family that’s bound to be looking for you, I’d be tempted to keep you.”

    “Just like your partner is trying to keep my flask?” the green haired youth asked with some amusement, looking across the room to where the two-toned hench girl was happily watching a milkshake - somehow with distinct stripes of strawberry, vanilla, and chocolate - flow into a large glass.

    The girl looked back and glared, clutching the flask to her chest, clearly indicating that it was hers, now. Over the course of his stay, Malachite had never once heard her speak, though she did manage to get her meaning across through gestures and expressions quite well.

    “She’s… not going to give that back, is she?” Malachite asked, quirking an eyebrow.

    “No, no she isn't,” the criminal agreed.

    Malachite shrugged. It wasn’t any real loss, after all. “Fine. She can keep it,” he paused as the girl shot him a surprisingly happy smile before continuing, “for as long as it takes for her to lose it. You’re giving me back the rest of my stuff, right?”

    “Of course!” the criminal protested. “What do you take me for? Some two bit thug? I’ve got your scroll, wallet, and weapon stashed in a locker. I’ll give you the key and directions once you’re on your way.” Reaching over and grabbing onto one of Malachite’s arms, he hoisted the younger male to his feet. “Now, come along, we wouldn’t want you to be late for supper, now would we?” Guiding the youth to the door, he handed him a folded piece of paper. “There’s the location and key for your locker. Now, get out of here. We’ve got to get moving before you have a chance to alert the police, after all.”

    Malachite chuckled, taking the paper as he did so. “You know, for a criminal, you’re alright.” Holding out his hand to shake the surprised criminal’s hand, he added, “If things ever get to be too much and you want to go legit, look me up. We could always use some more competent teachers.” With that said, Malachite left, leaving a business card with the acronym SCAM across the top in the surprised villain’s hand.




    “Hey, Pyrrha,” Malachite called as he walked down the slope toward where the redhead was sitting, her arm crossed on top of her knees as she looked over part of the countryside.

    “Hello again,” Pyrrha replied with her signature trill. Malachite would admit that ‘trill’ probably wasn’t the right term for the lilting tone Pyrrha used with her greetings, but he definitely couldn’t think of a better term for the musical quality she added to it. “What brings you here?”

    Malachite sat down next to the arena fighter and shrugged before replying, “My mom is talking with your parents and manager again.”

    “She is?” Pyrrha asked apprehensively, looking over toward Malachite.

    Malachite nodded. “Yeah. She’s probably trying to convince them that you need to be taking a larger percentage of your toy sales.” Pyrrha groaned and dropped her head into her crossed arms. “You know, you’re the only person Mom has ever needed to try to convince to take more money before.”

    “Can’t you just give it to charity?” Pyrrha didn’t whine, but the plaintive note was definitely still there. “It’d do more good that way.”

    Malachite shrugged again. “Mom can only do so much with it without you needing to be the one organizing things, and you blew past that point more than a year ago. As it is, I’m pretty sure Mom’s set up an account for you that she’s piling money in until you agree to take it.” At Pyrrha’s repeated groan, Malachite gave another shrug before adding, “At least, I assume she is. She might be turning it into stocks or something instead. Or just pocketing it, though I doubt that. She doesn’t really keep me abreast of all the business dealings. That’s more Sabah’s thing.”

    “Can’t I just be normal for once?” the redhead asked, quietly enough that Malachite was sure she hadn’t meant for him to hear her.

    “Normal is overrated,” Remnant’s favorite kidnapping victim joked. Standing up, he offered a hand to the Invincible Girl. “Come on, I know what’ll make you feel better. A nice, friendly spar.”

    Pyrrha took the hand up while shooting Malachite a friendly, but not quite joking glare, “Maybe if you actually fought in the tournaments, people would see that I’m not some idol to set on a pedestal.”

    “Sorry, Pyrr, not gonna happen,” Malachite replied, shooting down the often made suggestion. “I just don’t have time to go through the tournament circuit with all of my family obligations. Besides, we both know that my Semblance would have pretty much everyone trying to smear me outside of the fights. Yours, at least, can be worked around, if they know about it.” With a grumble, he added, “Unless they have a prosthetic, of course.” At this, Pyrrha gave him a cheeky smile, more playful than most usually saw. Public life as a tournament champion definitely wasn’t doing the friendly, if shy, girl any favors.

    “And that brings us to the bigger issue,” Malachite continued. “When the chips are down and the fight is on the line, you instinctively use anything available to get an advantage.” Pyrrha made to protest, but Malachite kept going, cutting her off before she could really start. “Sure, you can keep it down during training and sparring, but you’ve got one hell of a competitive streak under all of your niceness. If we ever fought against each other in a tournament, I’d either have to reveal a hell of a lot more than I’d want to or you would win. Simple as that.”

    Pyrrha pouted adorably, even if it did clash with her normal resting haughty face. Malachite blamed the paparazzi for how hard it seemed for her to show what she was really feeling. They were usually to blame for such things, as far as he could tell. “Maybe I should tell my manager to make it a condition for me taking a higher percentage?” she asked.

    Malachite grinned. “That might have worked a year ago, but I’m going to be heading to a combat school, so I wouldn’t be able to fight in any of the tournaments besides the Vytal Festival, even if I wanted to.”

    Pyrrha slumped slightly. “Oh, right. I forgot that students at the main Academies can’t participate in the normal tournaments.” She paused for a moment before asking, “You aren’t going to your family school?”

    “I decided getting away from the politics of Atlas would be a good thing. Get a chance to make some more real friends while I still have the free time to enjoy having them. What about you? Are you staying in the tournament scene or did you decide on a combat school?”

    Pyrrha flushed as she looked away. “I decided to go to Beacon. Mother wanted me to go to Haven, but…” she trailed off, rubbing one of her arms uncertainly.

    “You want to have a chance to get away from your fame,” Malachite finished knowingly. “I’m actually going to be going to Beacon for the same reason. I considered looking into Haven, myself,” though it was more out of passing interest than any real desire to go there; his place had been set at Beacon for years, after all, but Pyrrha didn’t need to know that. “There was just something… off-putting… about Headmaster Lionheart, though I can’t really place what, exactly, it is.”

    “You noticed it, too, then,” Pyrrha said, sounding relieved that she hadn’t imagined it. Malachite had to admit that he couldn’t place what exactly bothered him about the Faunus, but he was more willing to put his trust in many of his kidnappers over the Headmaster.

    “It’s not just you,” Malachite confirmed. “Now, come on, the adults will be busy rehashing the same old arguments for at least another hour. We might as well get in a spar, right?”

    Pyrrha smiled. “I would enjoy that.” The two teens made their way to one of the nearby private training rooms, eager to beat the stuffing out of each other in the name of friendship.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2020
  4. Threadmarks: Rainbow Trailer (Destiny's Intro)
    Jonakhensu

    Jonakhensu I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Rainbow Trailer (Destinys Intro)

    People really like to ponder various complex philosophical questions. Such as this one, for example: if a tree falls in the forest, and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound? While what happened next did not shed light on this conundrum, it did answer a different, but related question. Does a tree hear the sound of a falling spider?

    “Oww…” grumbled Yache Ruhm, scratching at her slightly bruised posterior. Even though Youkai were much more resilient to mundane wounds and regenerated from them in minutes, if not seconds, falling on your bum still felt like falling on your bum.

    Groaning in annoyance, Yache stood up and looked around.

    “Huh. I could’ve sworn that the Forest of Magic wasn’t an option on the locations list…” she pondered out loud, looking around the area she found herself in. “Oh, right, my stuff,” she exclaimed, suddenly remembering that she didn’t just gain new skills and abilities, but also some new equipment.

    Checking herself over, she took a moment to appreciate her new form before noticing that she was wearing a small backpack. She took it off and looked inside, finding that It contained her two major items of choice: the Sorcerer’s Sutra Scroll and the Mini-Hakkero, along with some money and a bunch of currently empty spell cards.

    Satisfied with what she found, Yache took out the portable furnace while leaving the rest of her junk in the backpack, slinging it on her back once again. The Forest of Magic was well known for being a home to a variety of rather dangerous, feral and, most importantly, hungry Youkai, so her first priority was to figure out how to protect herself. And with a lack of any other weapon, that meant the Mini-Hakkero.

    “Now to figure out how you work…” she mumbled, looking at the small miracle of magic and technology with wonder. Even now she could feel it thumming with spiritual energy as the processes within it went on their merry way. But while she did have the mind of a true magician, thanks to the similarly named perk, magic was still very new to Yache.

    “Okay, let’s see here” she muttered thoughtfully. She had a natural feel for how magic worked and moved, but no actual knowledge of how it all ticked so she was currently on the having no fucking idea stage of the scientific process. She let out a quiet ‘hrmm’ as she pondered.

    The Mini-Hakkero is a furnace, and Marisa always used it to augment her own specialty over light and heat… she thought, maybe I could try the same for my first attempt. The good ol’ laser attack…

    She was almost ready to begin her experimentation when she heard a rustle. It was less of a rustle that you get when a squirrel gets drunk off of apples and falls into a bush, and more of a rustle that you get when a bear wakes up and stumbles for its daily equivalent to a cup of coffee, which probably involved mauling some random passerby.

    While Yache never had been much of a naturalist in her previous life, the volume of the sound combined with her newfound Youkai predatory instincts left her with the obvious conclusion of ‘something big is moving around here, probably towards me’. “Screw it…” she muttered, sending the scientific process into that hole a few meters away from her and proceeding to the brute force approach of ‘shove magic into it and see what happens’.

    The whispering of the leaves quickly turned into excited talking, before becoming a rather heated shouting match as whatever was making the sounds finally appeared in Yache’s view. It was big, almost twice as big as a normal human, and certainly bigger than the rather petite Jorogumo. The vaguely werewolf-like creature was covered from head to toe in matte black fur that was so dark, even with enhanced sight it seemed almost like a hole in the world. The only parts that stood out on the creature were the bony protrusions that appeared here and there, and the skull that served as its head.

    The grim looking creature also noticed the woman standing ahead of its path, and seemed to pause in confusion for a moment, before giving off a roar and rushing at her. The woman, in turn, also gave off a roar, or perhaps a scream as she pointed the magi-technological furnace in her hands at the creature and desperately pumped it with all she had.

    The two shouts were soon joined by a third, much louder one as the Mini-Hakkero burst alight, magic erupting from its front in a colossal rainbow beam of love and destruction, engulfing the creature, the trees behind it, and a rather large section of the forest in the bright light of Yache’s first spell, which just so happened to be the Master Spark.

    By the time she stopped powering the device the monster was gone, and so was quite a lot of the plant life that used to inhabit what was now a small ravine.

    Yache gave herself a few moments to catch her breath before she once again began to think. Was that a?.. She pondered, thinking of the creature that almost tried to maul her, of the glowing orange eyes and the crimson markings on its skull. She looked around, noticing a rather glaring lack of anything fungal around. The Forest of Magic was rather well known for its grand variety of mushrooms, both mundane and magical, so the fact they were missing was rather concerning. Finally she reached a conclusion, which she couldn’t help but announce out loud.

    “Am I in RWBY? What the shite, Jump-chan?”




    Unfortunately, despite the sheer weight of this discovery, Yache simply didn’t have the time to ponder the implications of whether this was intentional, or if her quote unquote “benefactor” actually screwed up and sent her to the entirely wrong universe. Or if, perhaps, she bonked off of the Hakurei barrier or something else of similar nature.

    She would have dearly wished to do so, especially immediately after the biggest scare of her newly immortal life, but said life decided to drop her a present in the form of some more scares. The apparent exquisiteness of her dark, fear-stricken and fear-composed soul had combined with the simplicity of the loud badaboom, and the resulting cocktail of love, explosions and nearly shat skirts attracted even more Grimm to her current position.

    At first each and every appearance of a new black and white and red muzzle was met in almost the exact same way, with roaring on one side, screaming and magical heavy ordnance on the other hand. But soon it changed, as the screaming first quieted down into boredom as Yache tried to march through the newly redecorated forest. Then it changed once again into shouts of annoyance and even louder heavy ordnance as Yache simply got tired of constantly blowing up the same things over and over and over again.

    Nothing stays the same, though, and even this eternal tradition of smokey werewolves getting blasted in the face with love, friendship, and magical furnace juices had to end, as all things do. Yache was making way through what was now an especially annoying part of the forest, what with all the fallen trees and intersecting ravines, when she once again detected some rustling.

    At first she was ready to frown, shout and blast for what felt like the thousandth time, but some primal instinct made her hesitate for just a moment, and she was beyond glad that it did, for what came from the leaves were two obviously human figures. Even though both of them were massively and annoyingly taller than her, which she thankfully didn’t care about. At least, not now.

    “Oh finally, someone other than the bloody Grimm. I was afraid that I’d end up turning this place into reverse crochet at the rate I was going” she sighed happily, releasing a breath she didn’t even know she was holding, although it was most likely less of a fearful breath and more of a prepared curse cut short.

    The two figures quickly got over the freeze caused by almost being on the receiving end of a Mini-Hakkero held by an incredibly annoyed Jorogumo, even if they obviously didn’t know that this wooden box was called a Mini-Hakkero, and the itty bitty pretty spider lady was a Jorogumo, or what either of those things even were.

    One of the figures was a tall, lithe human man who wore what looked like a rather subdued suit. He walked with a cane, though it was obviously not necessary, and held a mug of… coffee, if Yache’s nose wasn’t lying, up to his lips. He seemed simultaneously worried and amused in equal measures.

    The other was a tall, statuesque blonde. Also human. She wore a figure-hugging top with a deep cleavage window and a black principal’s skirt over black leggings. A purple half-length cape with small stereotypical devil tails on the end hung off her shoulders. One of her hands was holding a riding crop. The other adjusted her half-moon glasses closer to her severely annoyed eyes.

    Hidden Wizard and Telekinetic Dominatrix. Ozpin and Glynda.

    Meeting a Spider Witch in the Emerald Forest.

    Yache felt as if someone far, far away was having a laugh at her expense. And judging by how the laugh didn’t have any similarities with a constantly sneezing small dog, it wasn’t Jump-chan. Or, at least, not her Jump-chan.

    It would make for a rather nice Touhou song title though.

    Glynda was clearly on guard, just waiting for Yache to make a move. The fingers around her riding crop were subtly stressing the leather, tiny squeaking sounds audible to any with sensitive hearing.

    Ozpin seemed a little tense too, but his curiosity was equally apparent. He took a sip of his coffee and studied Yache for a little while more. Then he lowered his mug and opened the conversation.

    “Is there a particular reason you’re tearing up my forest?” he genuinely asked, raising an eyebrow. “And with Magic, no less?”

    Glynda’s eyes widened. She glanced over to Ozpin, saw his serious face, then locked back on Yache immediately. Her shoulders tensed even more, and the almost physical aura of tension surrounding her became just a little more real.

    Ozpin sighed. “Relax, Glynda. I doubt this… woman, means us harm,” he chided her. “Despite her… unfortunate, coloring. Not everything black and white is a creature of Grimm.” His eyes never left Yache’s, however, and the dangerous glint in them gave her the obvious message that having that intention would not be a good plan.

    Fortunately and, at the same time, unfortunately, Yache managed to miss out on that obvious message with the speed of a runaway train drifting through whatever runaway trains like to drift through, and so she looked simultaneously relaxed and careless, her own body language being even more obvious than what Ozpin seemed to be intentionally projecting at her.

    As she lowered the Mini-Hakkero, Yache gave off a vague and incoherent grumble before pulling one of the long sleeves of her short, black and white dress up a bit and raising one of her tri-fingered hands up to graciously correct the two, not bothering to hide the fact that that sleeve was hiding two more arms.

    “I am black and gold, thank you very much,” she protested, “and also pink, but that’s besides the point.”

    She sighed, covering her five eyes for a moment to gather her thoughts, before she continued. “I do, however, apologize for the damage I’ve done. After the… I think fifteenth Grimm that tried to ambush me while I was trying to get out of here, I kind of grew careless. And annoyed. And a little bit pissed off.”

    At that moment, all three of them heard a random tree try and continue the ‘are falling trees silent’ experiment, with pretty loud results. Yache couldn’t help but wince at that, and it wasn’t simply because the tree seemed to have a rather poor idea of proper ethics of experimentation. At the very least, it failed to check whether there was anybody nearby for the results to be accurate.

    “...as I said, my apologies. As for magic…” she shrugged, “I don’t really have anything else to protect myself with at the moment. Didn’t have any chance to grab anything else after SOMEONE,” she looked up into the sky with annoyance for a moment, “dumped me here. And before you ask, no clue how and no clue when. I just sort of woke up here after deciding to take a nap at my own bloody house.”

    Technically correct might not actually be the best kind of correct, but at the very least it was better than nothing, especially as it helped Yache not give away everything, what with her piss-poor control over body language. After all, it bordered on simultaneously being still as a statue and subtly uncontrolled at the same time.

    Glynda relaxed minutely. Her grip and stance were still incredibly tight, but the barely audible squeaking of stressed leather had subsided.

    Ozpin peered at her for a few more seconds. “Interesting,” he commented, taking another sip of his coffee. He stepped further into the small gap in the trees they had found the spider woman in. He stopped within a comfortable distance, not too close and not too far that he couldn’t attack her. Even if his body language failed to be detected, he reasoned, this woman would certainly be capable of noticing tactical language.

    Or, at least, that was his hope.

    “I believe introductions are in order,” he declared, gesturing to Glynda… who was watching him with slightly widened eyes, clearly consumed by the belief that he was crazy. Crazier. “This is my assistant Glynda. She’s the Deputy Headmistress of my Huntsman Academy, Beacon. I am Professor Ozpin, Headmaster at Beacon. And you are?”

    Yache gave him a courteous nod. “Yache, a student of linguistics and magic at the college of Gensokyo” At least I was supposed to go there, she mentally grumbled before continuing. “Pleasure to meet you.”

    She looked back for a moment, as if hearing something. Apparently not finding what she was searching for she shrugged, and turned back to the other two.

    “I do apologize, but can we continue this talk elsewhere? Or, at the very least, in the process of going elsewhere? While I’m pretty sure I still have enough in me to deal with more Grimm, as I’m sure you do too, I think that all of us would appreciate if we didn’t have to wreck more of this poor forest in the process,” she asked in a polite, but yet again obviously somewhat miffed tone. Not at them, that was also pretty obvious, but mostly at the Grimm that seemed to, probably intentionally on Ozpin’s part, infest this forest like fleas.

    Glynda scoffed, looking around them with a keen eye. She peered into the darkness of the forest surrounding them as if she could actually see into it.

    Ozpin smiled, and it was a kind smile… but there was also steel in it. “Until I am assured that you pose no active threat to my students, I am afraid we will have to continue our discussion here,” he informed her gently. “Please understand, you have demonstrated Magic only seen during the likes of times long forgotten and a… disregard for trigger discipline.” He moved his cane in front of him, still mostly relaxed, and sipped his coffee. “Glynda will defend us for the time being if any Grimm decide to approach us. So tell me. What’s Gensokyo?”

    “I didn’t mean your academy, hell I’d take just leaving the forest in the first place, but I’m rambling again…” she sighed and crossed her arms over her chest, seemingly out of simple desire to have them not be flopping around. “I understand your concerns. I assure you that my disregard for trigger discipline is out of simple lack of any other choice. I never had much chance to practice combat outside of emergency measures.”

    “As for magic…” she stood there for a moment, thinking. “I think I’ll start with Gensokyo. I’ve never been that good at remembering the exact dates so my apologies for being somewhat vague, but, uhh… a few hundreds of years ago… maybe a thousand? Not sure.”

    She looked aside before continuing, this apparently helping her to think. “Either way, sometime ago, Gensokyo was formed as an area for the few remaining capable users of magic. We were kind of lucky in that it is somewhat physically separated from the rest of the world by mountains, and then that separation was enforced even further via magical means, to the point that some people are afraid that if the ones who built the barrier went any further, the area would just pop off and float away.”

    She shrugged, smiling a little bit. “I think that it’s just pointless fear, as we still have some issues with Grimm and whatnot, but who knows. I’ve still not finished my education so I can’t be certain about the principles behind it. And now I might never get to do so, unless it’s by rediscovering the further bloody science behind it by myself…“ she paused, clearing her throat and her mind before continuing, “but I’m rambling again.”

    “I’d love to be more specific, especially since I’d prefer to return, but all I can say is that it’s a relatively small area, a few tens of square kilometers somewhere… East-ish? The isolation’s kind of gotten to us,” she remarked, shrugging once more, “so unfortunately that’s all I’ve got in terms of general knowledge.”

    Glynda started out Yache’s information exposition extravaganza watching the forest around them. By the end of it, she was staring straight at the spider woman with a look of abject disbelief.

    Ozpin, on the other hand, seemed… amused. And also fascinated. He stared at Yache for a few seconds, looked down and took a sip of his coffee as if to think, then looked to the sky that was barely visible through the Emerald Forest’s canopy. “What shape is the moon?” he asked, almost out of nowhere.

    Glynda looked at him with disbelief at that.

    Yache thought for a moment before responding. “Mostly a sphere with chunks missing and floating, depending on the month. Though I’ll give you that it occasionally goes either bloody red or sapphire blue. I think that it’s something to do with the barrier doing something prismatic to it with magic, but again, can’t be sure. Will have to look at it now that I’m outside, might be interesting…” she considered, before interrupting herself once more, deciding to make a mental note of it instead. Which she’d probably forget, but that’s besides the point.

    Glynda sighed and shook her head, clearly deciding to stop paying attention to their conversation. She returned to the scanning of the forest. The clenching of her jaw betrayed her annoyance, though.

    Ozpin studied her a bit more, seemingly taking in everything she rambled on about. It almost looked like he believed her, the discerning and intense look on his face somehow saying that he agreed with what she was saying.

    Then his next words tore that rug from under her.

    “You are a very accomplished misdirector, Miss Yache,” Ozpin informed her gladly, fully complimenting her skills. It was almost like someone congratulating their opponent in a game of chess for a highly skilled move. “You know just enough of Remnant to make it sound like you come from here, or at least fit wherever you do come from into a narrative capable of fooling most people.”

    Glynda snapped straight back to Ozpin, her eyes wider than Yache had seen them. She stood straight up, and the leather of her riding crop started squeaking again.

    Ozpin leaned over and looked Yache straight in the… eyes. “However, I know for a fact no mages except myself and Salem survived,” he flatly declared.

    While she was expecting that her story wouldn’t pull through, which was the very reason she wasn’t even trying to pretend that she’s from around here, it was simply natural that she would get nervous after having it so flatly pointed out to her, and it showed, though less in her facial expression and body language, and more in terms of her breathing getting a bit faster, as well as the way her legs got a bit weaker, barely noticeable to most people unless they paid attention.

    He straightened back up, brushing off his shirt… with his mug, and then took another sip. “I don’t know where you come from, but it’s not Remnant.” He looked at her and tilted his head to the side slightly, narrowing his eyes. “In your favor, though, the fact that you were willing to try and spare me the mental alarm of learning that speaks volumes for your true disposition.”

    With that Ozpin turned around on his heel and started striding off into the forest. “Come, Miss Yache. We can speak further in my office.”

    Glynda watched him go, flabbergasted. Once he was a little ways into the trees, she then looked at Yache. She looked resigned and her lips were set in a long-suffering grimace. She was obviously used to Ozpin pulling shit like this.

    “Behave yourself,” she flatly declared, not relaxing one bit. She gestured in front of her with her riding crop, a quick clap of the air adding emphasis, and then stood to the side to wait for Yache to pass in front of her.

    While definitely rather nervous by now, Yache still had enough composure and understanding of how out of her depth she was to shrug and simply go after Ozpin, giving Glynda what was supposed to be an apologetic look.

    “For what it’s worth, most of what I said was the truth. I just didn’t think that talking about other worlds is a good idea when you’re trying to not seem like a threat.” She paused for a moment, before shrugging once more. “Or a lunatic, for that matter.”

    Glynda scoffed. “You may not believe this, but a world traveller is not the strangest thing we have encountered recently,” she deadpanned. “You can make it up to me, at least, by helping me repair the forest you broke.”

    “Noted, though it might take a while,” Yache responded, trying to look at least mildly embarrassed, though it didn’t quite work. “If nothing else, it’s going to need a lot of replacement earth, judging by the scarring I left around the place. And the less I talk about the trees, the better for your nerves,” she coughed, now genuinely embarrassed.

    From up ahead, in the dark, the howl of a Beowolf sounded. A quick swish through the air and the howl cut off, a gurgling, strangled sound replacing it.

    “Glynda,” Ozpin called back, sounding unamused. “We may need to clear out the Forest soon.”

    Glynda just sighed, raising a hand to her forehead. She was clearly trying to massage a headache away. “Yes, Ozpin, I’ll get right on that after I put that forest back together.

    “Your assistance is appreciated, as always,” Ozpin fired back. He was still not visible in the thick foliage of the forest, and yet his voice carried back. That voice detailed just how amused he was by Glynda’s response. He must have been intentionally keeping
    trees between himself and Glynda and Yache, possibly to return to that Mysterious Headmaster vibe he so enjoyed.

    The squeaking of the leather of Glynda’s riding crop was likely music to his ears.

    To Yache, though, it was, at best, death metal.
     
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2020
  5. Threadmarks: Starfield Trailer (TCGM's Intro)
    Jonakhensu

    Jonakhensu I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Starfield Trailer (TCGM’s Intro)

    They say cats always land on their feet.

    Toshika wasn't a cat. She was a fox. Nevertheless when she came into being, she landed on her feet. Both her arms were spread straight out, palms flat, and her head pointed straight ahead. The classic T-Pose. Dominance had to be asserted at the beginning, after all.

    That pose doesn't really work for matters of standing if you don't have two legs, though. Or, you know, move. Both conditions which befell Toshika almost immediately after drawing her first breath.

    She was promptly reminded of the fact she got rid of one of her pairs of 'foot with attached leg' units for more juicy, delicious points. She was reminded of this by the reapplication of gravitational forces upon her new body. Irony was the first true experience she had, one all her own.

    She did not land on her feet.

    She landed on her foot. Singular.

    "AAAH!" she yelled, flailing her arms and tails as she toppled over to the left. She had vague intentions of trying to use her nine tails to try and stabilize herself, but she didn't have the muscle memory of a kitsune. Her efforts looked a lot more like a pinwheel of red-orange floof spasming around as she tipped sideways.

    She landed on her left arm, hip, and left boob, letting out a pained grunt. All three hurt from the fall. Toshika wasn't exactly light weight due to her figure and her tails. On top of that, she was wearing a rather heavy backpack that was obviously filled with gear. It clanked loudly when she landed on the roof. That clanking was probably her weapons. Or the camping gear, but the spheres pressing into her back said it was her weapons.

    "Oww."

    A loud “BORK” cut into her impending further groans of pain, and she found her face being rapidly licked by a dark purple and navy blue Corgi.

    Toshika blinked at the dog, momentarily confused, then it came to her. “Oh, Huey!” she exclaimed happily. “You’re every bit as adorable as I thought you would be!”

    Huey spoke his agreement with her. “BORK! BORK!”

    Then he plopped down on the roof in just the right spot that if she’d been standing, he would be sitting on her cleavage.

    Toshika’s face fell, a sigh escaping her lips. “And of course you’re just as much a perv as me,” she lamented.

    Another lick and a happily panting Corgi with a wide grin on his face cemented her opinion that he knew exactly what she was saying. The Corgi option was supposed to be based on Zwei, after all.

    Which meant she had a Battle Corgi.

    Toshika looked down at him, or from the perspective of everyone else, to the side, and grinned. “We’re going to have a very important task soon, Huey.”

    Huey tilted his head to the side curiously, still panting happily.

    “There’s most likely a certain spoder girl on this world who hasn’t been lewded remotely enough.”

    Huey’s eyes widened and his grin got even bigger. “BORK!”

    Toshika nodded and giggled a bit. “Yep ol buddy, ol pal, it’s up to us to make her crack and realize the sexy spoder girl she really is!”

    “BORK BORK!”

    And so that was how Toshika arrived on Remnant. Not with a bang, not with a whimper, but something somewhere in between and ninety degrees to the hyperspace dimensional axis. A momentary burst of style… followed by a rush of humorous flailing that would be humiliating if she hadn’t… ‘spawned’... on the roof of some building in the latter half of the morning. It was accompanied by the discovery of her highly intelligent doggo companion and the fact he was her Lewdtner in Crime.

    She knew that theme would continue on for her new life. She knew her writing style. And she remembered being her original self.

    She turned over onto her back, forcing the backpack under her while making sure she didn’t accidentally crush one of her tails, and stared through the lightly clouded blue sky at the gigantic moon that clearly suffered from a case of Dick God Syndrome. Huey didn’t seem to mind the shift in location, settling straight into her cleavage as if he belonged there.

    It was actually surprisingly comforting to have his warm body in that particular location. Intimate, but also entirely wholesome. Wouldn't look that way to pretty much everyone else but they were stupid and wrong and wholesome boob hugs were important, dammit!

    "Well," she muttered to Huey, still staring at the truly unreal moon, "that's a thing."

    “BORK!”

    “...I wonder if I could put it back together?” she pondered.

    “BORK BORK BORK!” Huey voiced his agreement.

    “Would need a spacesuit or something to let me breathe… and not freeze to death… but my Semblance should be capable of it if I do it piece by piece…”

    “BORK BORK BORK. BORK BORK, BORK BORK BORK BORK BORK!” Huey barked.

    Toshika blinked and turned her head to look at him. “You know I can’t speak dog, right?” she asked him.

    He looked momentarily put out, but then was happy again in a near instant. “BORK!”

    Toshika rolled her eyes and sighed happily. She returned her gaze to the sky.

    A few more seconds passed by as she thought through several revelations and considerations about her new body and new life.

    "...How the hell am I going to get up? You’re on my boobs. And I’m missing a leg."

    “...Bork.”




    "...Okay, clearly my Semblance isn't working," Toshika lamented.

    Huey whined in sympathy from her chest, but didn't move.

    "Why isn't it working? It's supposed to be instinctual!"

    Another whine, this time filled with a purely doggo sort of long suffering pain, rumbled through her chest.

    "Hey!" Toshika retorted, annoyed. She planted both hands on her hips and glared down at the boob snuggling Battle Corgi. "You haven't even known me that long! Neither of us has even existed for more than an hour! Don't give me that crap!"

    Huey sighed, lifted his head, and looked straight into Toshika's eyes with the most unamused expression she'd ever seen on a dog.

    "...Bork."

    Toshika pursed her lips. She couldn't speak dog, but she didn't really need to in order to translate that particular bark of Huey's.

    It was a look and tone that spanned across realities, universes, time, space, species, sex, and even states of existence. One she was quite familiar being on the receiving, and sending, end of.

    You're a dumbass.

    Toshika tilted her head to the side and frowned. "What's that supposed to mean?"

    Huey gave her another, even more deadpan look, and then bonked her nose with his.

    Something… flickered, on the very edge of Toshika's awareness. Like it was just out of reach, and yet inside her at the same time…

    Then she got it.

    Toshika brought a hand to her face and groaned. "Oh, right, duh. I don't have my Aura, which means no Semblance." She let her hand drop and glanced back down… or sideways, at Huey. "Is that what you were trying to tell me?"

    Huey looked at her doubtfully for a few seconds, then nodded.

    "Great," she lamented, dropping her head to the roof with a light thunk.

    Huey padded a little closer to her head, stepping lightly on her collarbone, and booped his nose against her chin.

    Yet again, that something flickered. A tiny bit stronger this time.

    And Toshika had an Idea.

    Her eyes widened, she grinned, and she rapidly raised her head. She had to stop herself abruptly so she didn't brain her dog, but that by no means wiped the immense smile of enlightenment off her face.

    "Huey," she almost gasped, remembering an often overlooked aspect of the Battle Corgi archetype Huey was based on. Zwei had a Semblance, so he had an Aura, and since Huey was basically Zwei 2... "You have Aura."

    Huey blinked at her, stuck out his tongue, and started panting happily.

    Toshika rolled her eyes, but her smile only grew at the adorable sight. "Can you unlock my Aura?" she asked.

    Huey tilted his head to the side, obviously confused.

    Toshika blinked, then sighed. "Right, you're a dog." She shook her head, trying to figure out how to get the point across. Or if it was even possible. She'd assumed it would be when she was creating… her existence, and boy was that going to get very confusing, but the proof is in the hot chocolate pudding. Or, well, the Battle Corgi. "You know the booping thing?" she tried, gesturing between her nose and Huey's.

    Her dog tilted his head the other way for a few moments, seemed to shrug, and booped her nose with his again.

    Another flicker. This one far stronger.

    Toshika grinned and rapidly nodded her head. "Yes! Yes, that! Exactly that! You're the bestest doggo in the universe!" Man, she was laying it on thick. "I need you to do that, only, like, a lot harder. If you know what Aura is, I need you to unlock mine, Huey!"

    Huey seemed to digest her words, tilting his head back and forth in thought. He went through several phases of obvious confusion with furrowed eyes, a happy and open mouth when he figured something out, and then finally settled on a determined look mixed with doggo pride.

    He stood up, as stout as he could, and walked a couple of steps backward… into her cleavage. Then he bent down and seemed to study her chest right around her heart.

    Toshika beamed. "Yes! Yes, that's it Huey!" she assured him, urging him on. "Unlock my Aura!"

    Huey nodded, once.

    And then started licking her chest.

    Toshika's expression faltered, then fell. His tongue straying dangerously close to her cleavage but mostly concentrating on her actual chest didn't cause that. No, it was the fact that she'd failed, and Huey thought she meant she wanted licking.

    She sighed, then shook her head. "It's okay Huey, I guess I wasn't clear eno-" she started, but cut herself off when she felt him actually sit down on her chest and… place a paw over her heart?

    Toshika watched, astounded, while he straightened his back and closed his eyes.

    And then he did something you'd have to see to believe.

    He put his other paw across his furry chest and onto his shoulder, a feat of contortions Toshika didn't even know dogs could pull off, and started chanting.

    "Bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork. Bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork bork, bork bork bork bork bork bork bork. Bork bork bork bork, bork bork bork bork, bork bork."

    Toshika didn't notice when he started glowing a light navy blue. Nor did she pay much attention to the piece of herself that woke up in response to the solemn, quiet intimacy of Huey's own… well, he basically threw an alarm clock at her. Even her own purple glow didn't grab her attention.

    Huey opened his eyes, grinned, and licked her face of the tears that had started to fall.

    "Y-you're the best damn dog in the universe, Huey," she totally didn't sob, clutching him in a tight hug.

    She felt his tail beat against her chest, felt his affectionate licks on her face, and it was the happiest she'd been in quite a while.




    It took a few minutes for her to compose herself. In that time, she experimented with her Semblance. Better to test out the thing that was supposed to carry her before she actually tried it out, right?

    Not that she expected any difficulty. Her Semblance was maxed out in every single field. But it never hurt to be proactive.

    Toshika pointedly told the part of herself that helpfully pointed out she didn't really do such testing that often to go take a long fall off a short cliff.

    After the testing, she had her final answer as to how she would manage mobility on Remnant until she could get a replacement leg or something similar.

    With her completely broken to shit and back Semblance.

    True, she wouldn't be utilizing it anywhere close to a fraction of her maximum power and range, but it was usable for this purpose nonetheless.

    She did run another test, to try and see if she felt some kind of drain on her Aura when she used her Semblance for something approaching combat. It was an important piece of data. The test consisted of her firing a huge blast of gravitationally compressed air straight up into the sky. So if anyone was awake at this ungodsly hour, they would’ve seen a gigantic pulse of purple starfield erupt into the sky over Vale.

    But nobody sane was awake anyways so who cared. The sun wasn’t even past the middle of the sky yet!

    The kind of full-body warm hugging feeling that sort of also felt like herself that she figured was her Aura, given it was the piece of her that woke up when Huey hit it with his, didn’t seem to even fluctuate.

    Like Breathing indeed.

    Anyways, she went through her backpack and found a few things. An ID showing her new existence, a skintight suit which seemed to be made out of dark carbon given its gray, hex tiled material (with a tail hole, even!), and a very official looking Beacon Acceptance Letter.

    She dug through the deceptively small backpack to find anything buried under the suit. And the six other identical suits underneath it.

    Was the backpack bigger on the inside? It had to have been, and yet when she tried to find the edges it was perfectly normal.

    Toshika narrowed her eyes at the blatant spatial shenanigans, but who was she to complain. That gigantic disguise wardrobe she got for free as a totes really am wery ebil 'Villain' was probably part of the backpack too.

    There were several dozen Dust Crystals… presumably for refilling her bombardment type weapons.

    Next were her Dusty Balls, those same weapons. The ones she'd designed to synergize with her Semblance seemed in working order from what she could tell. She didn’t exactly want to fire one off in a civilian area, much less on a roof. Bomb squads most likely wouldn’t look twice at her apparent Faunus-ness before trying to put her down.

    They’d fail, but she’d have to escalate if they didn’t stop, and she wanted to avoid having her first day end with being branded the Villain she technically was.

    Then a flask resembling a whiskey flask, dark gray, showed up. She remembered that she got it for hot chocolate, otherwise known as the ambrosia of the gods, so she pulled it right out of her pack and opened it up to take a sniff.

    Hot chocolate. Glorious, just the right temperature, and it even had little marshmallows floating in it. She drank of the elixir of life, and it was good.

    Her survival gear was sitting under the flask. A packed up tent, canned and packaged food of her absolute favorite kinds, a medic’s triage kit, an actual grappling hook, and finally some stuff that seemed like it would help in the outdoors.

    Not that she ever really intended to be that far from civilization… on the ground. She would find herself allergic to all the nature and the lack of technology.

    A thick stack of chips that were definitely Lien were squished against the side of the bag next to the kit. They were secured together by a rubber band. Must be that money she was supposed to ‘live frugally’ on.

    Which she definitely did not need, given the Family Money she had taken.

    Under them was a credit card next to a key in a side pocket. She would have investigated those further.. but then she noticed what was in the other side pocket.

    The wet dream merger of a smartphone and a hardlight computer known as a Scroll.

    She spent two hours on that thing, entirely forgetting about Huey or that she was holding herself up with gravity.

    Scrolls were fucking amazing.

    After those two hours of exploring Vale’s fledgling version of the Internet (though one that was far more advanced than it had been in canon, for some reason), she finally tried to find out if there was a way to replace her leg there in Vale. If necessary she would fly to Atlas and closer to Ironwood’s sphere of influence, but she’d rather not poke that bear until she’d met up with her fellow SIs.

    She only barely noticed the heat of the noon sun, instead feeling only a slight warmth. Toshika chalked it up to her new species which wasn’t quite Faunus and shrugged it off.

    There was a way. Her Scroll even showed her the way, easily in fact. Vale might not have had the technology of Atlas, however there was at least a basic mechashift prosthetics company established in the city. And their ‘page’, the Remnant equivalent of a website, said they could do special orders from Atlas, which solved the problem of actually having to go there.

    It wasn't cheap. Atlas importing was an order of magnitude more, too.

    But she knew she had that covered. Her character sheet read like some kind of munchkiny minmaxing prepper had written it.

    Oh yeah, she grinned to herself. I did.

    She remembered every single thing on it due to her eidetic memory, thank you original Me, and it was good.

    So she took her deceptively heavy weapons out of her backpack, zipped it up, pulled Huey off her chest and dropped him into a gentle gravitational eddy that she tethered relative to her body, then finally directed her Balls to orbit her head just above her ears. After that it was a simple step off the building’s edge and a soft drift to the ground.

    The fact her Semblance could take limited instructions and continue them on a loop without her focus was very helpful. It wouldn’t be of great use in combat, she’d have to at least focus on that, but she wouldn’t drop out of the air if she, say, had to crunch a Grimm with her gravity. Likewise her Balls would orbit her head unless she directed them elsewhere, which was super important for the bombardment modes.

    And she could also endlessly entertain Huey. As all dog owners knew, that was worth its weight in rare earth elements.




    It was certainly a sight to see. A glowing purple starfield wrapped, nine tailed, fox Faunus floating above Vale's sidewalks and missing a leg, the tight curve-hugging polo shirt she wore fine, if unbuttoned, but her tight pants entirely empty on the left leg side up to the upper thigh. A ring of eight metal orbs spun lazily around above her ears, trailing slightly behind her sometimes. And trailing behind them, a dark purple and navy blue Corgi that was doing aerial donuts, grinning like a loon, and barking at everyone and everything like he was the happiest doggo on Remnant.

    More amusing and heartbreaking was the expression of chagrined resignation on Toshika's face as she moved through the city. Her fox ears were flattened on her head, belying her state of mind, and the fact she didn’t really feel comfortable being looked at without both legs quite yet. She had no issue being looked at in a sexy way, none at all, but pity… she wasn’t really good at dealing with that, despite needing it sometimes.

    Still, she was on the way to get her leg back. Or, at the very least, her stability. She kept telling herself the embarrassment would fade once she was able to stand up.

    Her new leg wouldn't be a marvel of the highest technology Remnant had to offer like a certain blondeshell’s replacement arm, but she'd at least be able to walk and run with whatever prosthesis she acquired there. And hell, maybe one of her fellow SIs would pimp her leg!

    Okay, that sounded wrong. Toshika snickered to herself, her ears momentarily flicking straight up again. I’m so proud of myself.

    Back on topic. She would be able to be a full blown Huntsman with the new limb. Or at least, that's what the company’s page said, and it’s not like she had many other options. The test efforts to get around hopping on one foot while using her tails for balance that she’d undertaken on the roof only made her look a mix of stupid and sexy. The former because she was trying to hop on one foot. The latter because, well… boobs.

    Side note, get a sports bra, Toshika told herself, steadfastly ignoring the curious looks of people she passed as she continued floating towards her destination. ...A tight one.

    Mortification and embarrassment were new emotions for her. She generally didn't give a crap about what others thought of her.... unless those thoughts were sexy. And while the supreme size of her chest no doubt were behind the many glances which were very appreciative, the undercurrent was still one of confusion. Confused sexy is my domain, dammit!

    Must have been the new hormones. Plus, who knew whatever the floofy parts of her required to exist and function.




    A ROB Card.

    Writer Me thinks he's so clever, Toshika grumbled in her head.

    Whatever, she had a way to secure basically anything she could buy for herself, who cared if it was a living meme in credit card form. That pretty much just made it more awesome in her books.

    Annoying, especially as she remembered typing it in and giggling endlessly at how much it would piss off Ironwood when the Bank of ROB referred him to an endless loop of customer service departments in entirely different countries, but awesome.

    "Miss Corona, are you certain you don't want to wait? The leg from Atlas will only be a week," the nurse said, trying and failing once more to convince Toshika to call off the abruptly ordered surgery.

    "I have to fly using my Semblance or hop like a crazy person or a high schooler until I get a leg," she sarcastically replied. "So no, I'm entirely fine with not waiting. It's the same socket. Why bother when I can walk now?"

    The pretty nurse sighed and shook her head. "Wheelchairs exist, you know," she pointed out.

    "Don't care, wanna walk."

    Giving up, finally, the nurse just rolled her eyes and turned to the side. "She's prepped, Doctors."

    ‘Prepped’, she said. Toshika rolled her eyes and blew air out the side of her mouth, moving her hair out of her face. If ‘prepped’ was having every single one of your nine tails clamped down by secure straps, sure, she was ‘prepped’.

    She didn’t begrudge them too much, though. Apparently faunus with tails had a nasty habit of their tails actually attacking surgeons that worked on their bodies while unconscious, and especially so if the faunus had Aura.

    Toshika had to admit that was not a species quirk she’d expected. Even so, it actually made sense. More than that, it was distinctly lacking any kind of racist sting given that animals on Earth didn’t have perfect conscious control of their tails when awake, much less knocked out, and clearly that trait carried over to the Faunus if Blake’s ears twitching and Sun Wukong’s (and isn’t that an on the nose name) monkey tail curling around on its own were any indicators.

    True, those were in the show, but she had verified that her own tails performed actions, sometimes major, of their own accord too. And she had nine of them, all very, very strong, and capable of being utilized in CQC.

    She wouldn’t want to be grappled by fox tails capable of lifting a man if she was a surgeon either.

    Plus, it took conscious effort to turn Aura on and off, after all, and it sprang automatically to the defense of someone even without them knowing it. They could do an awake state operation with the painkillers and numbing agents they had with the patient’s cooperation, but it wasn’t advised.

    Not that this ability of theirs helped Toshika, given she had no fucking idea how to turn it off in the first place.

    Thus, the strapdown, the operation, the works.

    Hey, she wasn’t an expert in mechashift leg replacements, and her engineering skills definitely didn’t help her understand whatever the fuck the microtech that was mechashift was beyond ‘piece X does Y, insert into Z’.

    To be fair that was apparently a lot more than most people on Remnant understood, but it wasn’t enough to guide this operation and Toshika knew it.

    The head surgeon approached her, a handsome and kind looking man. “Alright Miss Corona, we’re ready to put you under,” he gently informed her, smiling. “Anything you need to tell us that you may have forgotten before we do so?”

    Toshika appeared to think about it, then abruptly grinned. “I better have both lungs when I wake up, Doc,” she teased him.

    He blinked, stunned, then laughed. “I will endeavor to make sure we don’t remove your lungs as we operate on your leg,” he deadpanned, though the effect was ruined by his ear to ear grin.

    “Good to hear it Doc.”

    The man shook his head at her. He turned to the side and moved the absolutely gigantic fucking needle on a swivel arm with gods damned hydraulic compression cylinders on it she originally thought was a fucking 3D Printer for metal over towards her leg.

    Toshika couldn’t help it. She froze up, an unholy shriek erupting from her. She even started to glow purple, and only the rattling of the operation table as it started coming free from the floor under her power snapped her out of it enough to prevent her from flying through the roof, up up and away from that thing.

    The nurse and assistant surgeon jumped straight into the air, then gave her dirty looks.

    The lead surgeon halted his advance, peering around the monstrosity with a worried look. “Miss Corona?” he asked her. “Did something happen?”

    She smiled shakily and pressed herself into the operating table. “WHY IS THAT SO BIG?!” she asked, sounding not unlike an angry cat. “IT HAS PISTONS! PISTONS, DOC!”

    He did his blinking thing again and then sighed. “It has to get through your Aura,” he explained patiently. “Unless, of course, you’ve figured out how to turn it off in the last few minutes?”

    Toshika took a moment to process that, remembering that she had a force field around her body. One she didn’t know how to turn off. “Oh,” she squeaked, relaxing somewhat. “Right.”

    Writer Me, you fucking ass! You could’ve at least taught me how to control my damn shield!

    The lead surgeon smiled sympathetically at her and nodded away from the operating theatre with his head. “I’ve heard looking away helps,” he offered.

    Toshika stared at him, then at the giant fucking needle, and finally looked over at Huey on the other side of the soundproof observation window.

    While the sound of his “BORK!” wasn’t audible, even to her enhanced hearing, his happy, reassuring smile and wagging tongue made her relax.

    “Aight Doc, you’ve got, like, ten seconds until I can’t keep myself from crushing that thing under the weight of an Atlas Frigate,” she told him. She steadfastly kept her gaze locked on Huey even as she heard the team rapidly shuffling around and the pneumatic hiss of compressing pistons.

    A few seconds later, something like six or seven if she was counting (she very much wasn’t), that hugging feeling of hers registered a massive intrusion in the stump of her leg, and flinched back in surprise. Right along with that came the extreme pain of a needle the size of her finger piercing her skin. And muscles. And what felt like literally everything else.

    It was over in a single moment as the numbing agent kicked in, but that didn’t keep her from whimpering. The pain was entirely gone, hell, she couldn’t feel the stump that was her left leg’s remains at all, but she’d never done well with needles of a normal size as her original self. Much less giant ones with pistons.

    Also she was already feeling pretty loopy. What the hell was in that thing?!

    “Miss Corona?” the lead surgeon said, coming into her vision but making sure not to block her line of sight on Huey.

    She fought her drooping eyes and limp form to manage a couple of words. “Yeah… Doc?” she weakly asked, consciousness slipping away.

    He had a teasing lilt to his grin now. “The Vale Organ Donor Society thanks you for the volunteering of both of your lungs.” He was so obviously teasing it was painful, which negated any panic Toshika might’ve felt.

    The room was growing dark, but she still had to retort. “Mother… fuc-

    And like that, she was out.




    Toshika woke up on a soft bed. Comfy mattress, comfy pillow, comfy blanket over her body and brushing the ring of metal grafted to her stump-

    Wait a second, she thought, her eyes snapping open.

    The kitsune Faunus bolted straight up in bed and pulled the covers off.

    She was clothed, thankfully. They’d cut off the left pant leg to get access to her stump before she was strapped in and had that- not thinking about it, had her operation done, but she was expecting them to change her clothes… or something. She was surprised to see that she was wearing exactly what she walked in with.

    Her right leg looked normal, or at least what she could tell of it from inside the pant leg did. Her left… had a cap of some kind of gray/gold-ish metal which was ringed by a smooth, solid strip of metal with a bunch of tiny lights and what were clearly contact points running around her leg and slightly up. The ring had four depressible dimples at compass points around her leg.

    “You’re up,” a woman said.

    Her head swiveled to the right to see the nurse from before with a clipboard in her hand… and a Huey being pet in the crook of her arm.

    Despite herself, Toshika found a smile breaking out. “How long was I out?” she asked, returning her gaze to the socket.

    “Five hours or so,” she answered. “Your Aura is pretty strong. Healed you right up.”

    “Yeah, it tends to do that,” Toshika acknowledged, turning her leg stump in different directions to try and see the implant’s various parts. “I see Huey has already corrupted you.”

    “He’s adorable,” the nurse defended herself, somewhat heatedly.

    Toshika chuckled even as Huey agreed wholeheartedly. “That he is.” She turned to the nurse and grinned, placing both hands on her lap. “So! Where’s my leg?”

    The nurse nodded over to the left. Toshika turned around and beheld… well, technological hotness.

    It wasn’t like Yang’s bright yellow, Ember Celica-integrated arm replacement had been. Her low tech prosthetic leg, and yes, this was the low tech one, looked a lot like a normal human leg… except it was slightly more white than her actual skin tone and had light embossed grooves running along it.

    And oh yeah, rocket boosters in the foot. The thruster ports could just barely be seen on the ankle.

    Because why not?

    It actually kinda looked like that one body replacement from the Alita movie. Except, well, it was just a leg.

    Wow that’s pretty,” Toshika exclaimed.

    “Only the best for our high paying clients,” the nurse answered. She then held out Huey to her and smiled. “Let’s get that on you and get you checked out, shall we?”

    Toshika pulled Huey to her chest and wasn’t surprised when he immediately snuggled into her cleavage. “Sure,” she said, ignoring the nurse’s slightly widened eyes at the actions of her dog. “Show me how it works.”

    And so, she did, and Toshika walked out of Vale’s highest end prosthetics company with a spring in both steps. Though only one of them had a… boost, you could say.

    Plus a yet again aerial dogfighting Corgi trailing behind her and her weapons, once more barking at the entire city.

    She took out her phone- sorry, her scroll, and glanced at the time. She had about four hours until From Dust Till Dawn was supposed to be robbed. Or, well, the ballpark time she believed it would be robbed. It had been dark at the time during the show, but not so dark that unlit objects were invisible. So some time in the early evening.

    Given she knew the plan was to meet up at Beacon unless they ran into each other, sticking next to Ruby (and ensuring she actually got accepted into Beacon, who knew what changes the others had made to the world) was a good way to keep an important part of canon on track and also gain a friend before she ran into her fellow SIs.

    “Well Huey,” she announced with a sigh, putting her scroll back into her pocket. “Time to go stake out a Dust shop.”

    Huey agreed.
     
  6. Threadmarks: Chapter 1
    Jonakhensu

    Jonakhensu I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Team SALTY

    Chapter 1

    Nine years after arriving on Remnant

    It seemed like everyone was trying to figure him out, his origins, his abilities, whether he’s single in some cases. It was honestly starting to get annoying, and the next person to ask him to join this organization or that before he finished waking up would find themselves having a bad time…

    As he started to wake up there was a knock on the door, and when he answered it he was quite angry. That’s how he came face to face with Professors Ozpin and Goodwitch. “Hello, may we come in? I’d like to ask a couple of questions.” Grumbling, ‘Lorem’ let him in, they’d come all this way, might as well not be too rude.

    “What are your questions? I’ve been asked about whether I’ve been at several locations, and I’ve never been to any of them.” he deadpanned for what felt like the hundredth time. “If you’re going to invite me to Beacon then I have to say I’m not sure I’d be a good fit. If you’re going to insist, then let me finish waking up first.”




    Nine years and one day after arriving on Remnant

    “Well I’ve been invited to Beacon…” he muttered to himself, sitting in his rented room in a hotel in Vale. He had intended to mess around in Fuyuki before the story started, so the only thing that really changed was the scenery and what he fought while waiting. “I’ve got a long year ahead of me, gonna try to get some sleep…”




    The rest of the trip through the now ruined forest, outside of occasional howls that were immediately followed by groans and gurgles, was rather boring. Beacon Academy was beautiful, indeed, but even that was followed by more boredom as the three of them entered what was, apparently, Ozpin’s office. It was also beautiful, at least as long as you liked the aesthetics of overly green clock towers with titanic gears, but it was both too big and too empty for Yache’s tastes.

    The only things that this office had plenty of were mugs and polite yet stern and rather tense talking. But in the end, the three of them or, to be more exact, the two of them and a rather annoyed observer came to an agreement. Yache would stay at Beacon for now, and would enroll in it to continue her education, at least in some way, while simultaneously preparing herself for the rather rough life on Remnant. The planet had little need of linguists after all. Unless, of course, Yache thought she might be able to converse with the Grimm.

    Ozpin had been joking. When she said she would probably end up trying, Yache wasn’t.

    The other part of the agreement was that Yache would be allowed to use Beacon’s halls to continue her magical education. While Ozpin freely admitted that he’d forgotten a lot about true magic through the ages, Yache privately thought that he actually meant he’d forgotten more about magic than most people had learned, but that was neither here nor there.

    The gist of the matter was that she would be allowed to study at Beacon, both in general and to continue her magical self-studies, as long as she put effort in the former and had at least some oversight for the latter. In the end, her new life quickly stabilized into a sort of routine. Study for the entrance exam, something that had Glynda grinning sadistically, learn magic under the watchful eye of either the Wizard or the Dominatrix, and help the latter fix up the forest that she had inadvertently blown to smithereens.




    Glynda Goodwitch was not having a good day. While Yache was never that good at telling people’s emotions and thoughts through reading body language, the true meaning behind her eye’s twitching was obvious even to the spider youkai.

    “I told you that we would need a lot of earth,” huffed Yache, putting the two wheelbarrows full of dirt down on the ground. “I’m pretty sure a lot of it was straight up vaporized into nothingness.”

    Twitch twitch. “I see,” Glynda growled out, before using her semblance to fix at least some of the poor, broken forest. The part that hadn’t been evaporated entirely and sent to forest heaven, at the very least. “This just became a lot harder if there’s nothing for me to reassemble.”

    Yache was able to feel a tiny bit guilty, which for her might as well have meant she was bawling on the ground begging for mercy. “Sorry.”




    Yache’s forays into the mysterious and forgotten art of magic were… enlightening, in many a way, even for such a historical figure like Ozpin. Most of the time, the results of her study were neutral, taking the slow and steady process of figuring everything out from the bottom. Other times, she did experiments. Some had… interesting results. Others, fun results. And sometimes, it was both.




    Glynda’s eyebrow was doing its best to tire itself out as she glared at the mass of magically conjured spider silk in front of her. It wasn’t the first, nor the last, time where she wished that her Semblance was to burn things with a stare instead of telekinesis.

    “Uhh… I think my instincts took over for a bit,” Yache admitted in embarrassment.

    “It is rather comfortable in here, all things considered,” Ozpin muffled from inside the webbed cocoon that was originally supposed to be a hammock. That he wasn’t supposed to be in, but apparently he also got caught up in the excitement of this experiment. “An excellent location within which one can decompress and… relax.” And, judging by the long, ‘relaxed’ sipping sound, his mug of coffee-scented something was also somehow in there.

    Glynda’s eyebrow kept twerking in an attempt to jump off her face as Yache sighed and moved forwards. “Let’s get you out of there, sir.”

    “I would be very grateful, Miss Yache. While it is quite cozy in here, I still have work to do. And I don’t exactly look forward to having to mediate a spat between my Deputy and you.”

    Yache felt the nearly incendiary stare of Glynda trying to drill into her carapace and whimpered. Well, it was mostly a high-pitched grunt while she was busy unwrapping Ozpin like the world’s most morally ambiguous Christmas present, but she’d long since accepted that she was not one to make situationally appropriate emotional reactions.




    Even when one is a prodigy, and even when they’re backed up by a nearly omnipotent extradimensional system that flat out declares them a prodigy by raw fiat, accidents still happen. Such was the price of knowledge. Theories that went unconfirmed, and in the process tore already confirmed parts to shreds. Experiments that failed to provide results, or worse. But for every fluke and failure, there was a success, a small step forward on the ever expanding path of science. And sometimes, these small steps turned into leaps.




    Yache was walking around the construction, making final checks and searching out any parts of it she could tweak. Her usual observers, overseers and occasional rubber duckies were already behind the protective shield, just in case something went wrong. Ozpin even decided to leave his favourite mug back in his office, making do with his second favourite mug that was, to be entirely fair, essentially identical to the first one.

    At last, Yache finished her final checks. She looked down at the scroll in her hands, making sure all of her calculations were correct for the umpteenth time, before sighing, putting the device down and pulling out the Mini-Hakkero.

    All right… she thought, mentally walking herself through the process once more, just in case, the Hakkenshiro is currently in pre-launch standby. For the reaction to begin, it requires a spark of magic from eight major elements, combined into a single magical chain. She looked at the furnace in her hands. With a small expenditure of energy and some focus… the Mini-Hakkero growled, releasing a bright, short spark of magic, which was slowly modulated until it looked like a plasma cutter. The Mini-Hakkero provides the spark for the reaction.

    Slowly and carefully, Yache turned the small furnace to the middle point of the construction in front of her. With a small application of directional force… the spark detached from the Mini-Hakkero, slowly floating towards the reaction containment “chamber” of the structure in front of her, which consisted of several concentric rings of various sizes.

    The spark arrives at the reaction point, and the controls are released. With a visible drop of concentration on Yache’s part the spark burst alight, causing the rings to immediately begin their rapid rotation as the machine struggled to contain the rainbow explosion in the middle. “And with the containment system online…” Yache mused out loud, a small yet perceptible grin forming on her face, “the reaction stabilizes, achieving self-sufficiency.”

    Her grin only widened as she saw the spheroid of magical power expand, fill out the reaction area and go into proper standby. If you had a keen eye well used to the flows of magical energies, you would have been able to see that this was not a simple spheroid. Instead, it was a Hypersphere, each slice of the fourth-dimensional sphere holding its own reaction, yet each one connected and interflowing.

    If you had a particularly good understanding of magical energies, and an excellent eye, you would have probably noticed that the spheres weren’t just mere spheres, even outside of the presence of a fourth dimension. Each part of the reaction, each three-dimensional spheroid-slice was heavily reminiscent of a Yin-Yang symbol, two elements locked in perpetual conflict, and yet perfect balance.

    Yache couldn’t help herself. She laughed, beginning with a mere giggle, and ending with a full blown cackle as she stood in front of what she’d created out of what amounted to weapon construction leftovers and simple figurines of silver and other magically conductive metals.

    Eventually the laughter ran its course, and Yache looked on at the machine with a satisfied grin. “Victory,” she concluded.

    “Indeed it is,” agreed Ozpin, having stepped out from behind the protective cover, admiring the mass of swirling, rainbow energy with an amused, yet knowing look. He couldn’t help but think of the past, of all the mages from the ancient times that he once knew. Of all the breakthroughs a young mage could make during their early studies, the first one was always the most satisfying.

    They stood there for almost a minute, either admiring Yache’s handiwork, or reminiscing about the long-gone past. Finally, the silence was interrupted by the crack of the relatively young mage’s knuckles.

    “Alright then, now to shut this thing off without it exploding.” And while she proceeded to go and do just that, Ozpin quickly retreated back behind the shield. Better safe than sorry.




    “Kitsune’s Log, Stardate… who the actual hell knows, Time, 7PM. I’m still bored.”

    “BORK!”

    “Huey’s bored too. I hope Ruby gets here soon, or I may just start flying over Vale and hunt Torchwick down myself. End log.”

    Toshika sighed and ended the recording of her scroll. “Gods, why do all the movies make stakeouts look fun? This is the most mind numbing thing I’ve done since staring at a wal-”

    She stopped talking as she heard humming. Her fox ears tilted in the direction of the faint sound and she peered over the skyscraper she was camped out on top of.

    “Huh. I didn’t know Ruby could hum.”

    The little red reaper was all the way down the street, Crescent Rose on her back and cloak flying, as she literally skipped towards the Dust shop. While humming. Her theme.

    With her headphones on.

    “She actually listens to her own theme song when she’s just out and about,” Toshika deadpanned.

    “BORK!” agreed Huey.

    "Moreover, she has a theme song to listen to in the real world."

    "BORK, BORK BORK!"

    “She was not supposed to be capable of being more adorable. We are hitting adorable singularity levels at this point.”

    “BORK BORK!”

    Ruby went into the shop. Toshika heard her greet the owner, then the rustling of pages a few moments later.

    “Well, this is going to be fun.”

    It was only a few minutes later that a suited man in a bowler hat and assorted thugs entered the shop.

    Toshika quickly put the stuff she’d taken out of her backpack back in and put it on both of her shoulders. She stretched, bending side to side, then rippled her tails one by one.

    “You ready, Huey?” she asked, looking down at her Battle Corgi.

    An expression she hadn’t seen yet on him made itself known. If she wasn’t wrong, that was the doggo version of anticipation of battle.

    “Feel free to take out the mooks, but don’t attack Torchwick,” she commanded him.

    He tilted his head to the side, tongue wagging.

    “The guy in the bowler hat.”

    “BORK!”

    “...You can pee on him though.”

    “BORK BORK BORK!”

    He seemed to really like that.

    Toshika’s ears perked up as she heard the fated words come from the little red reaper’s mouth.

    Are you… robbing me?

    “Showtime.”

    Toshika lifted herself and Huey up into the air, then moved them so they hovered above the entrance to the shop. There she waited. It could only be a few seconds.

    The store’s window shattered and Ruby tackled Mook 2 out in a somersault.

    Then she stood up in an act of showmanship she could have only learned from Qrow as Crescent Rose slowly unfolded into its full scythe form, which she then planted straight into the asphalt. A moment later, she clicked her headphones off.

    She actually put a slow mechashift mode into her gun for dramatic reveals. It wasn’t just artistic license for the show.

    Ruby is best Remnant girl.

    “Okaaay…,” Roman’s voice came from the shop. “Get ‘er.”

    What proceeded to occur was a glorious twenty seconds of red reaper kicking mook ass. Huey wouldn't have had an opportunity even if he had been down there. Ruby was damn good.

    Toshika readily agreed with Roman after seeing their performance in what amounted to real life. Those mooks sucked.

    “Well, Red, I think we can all say it’s been an eventful evening.”

    “Huey, you may commence urinal bombardment,” Toshika informed the Battle Corgi next to her.

    Huey looked up at her, looked down at Roman, and lifted his leg.

    “You are the best gods damned dog in the entire universe,” she told him, grinning ear to ear.

    Roman whipped up his cane as the stream began. “-and as much as I’d love to stick around-” he continued, popping up his scope, “I’m afraid this is where we part-”

    That was as far as he got. Then the torrential stream of dog pee landed right on his bowler hat-clad head.

    “GUH! WHAT THE?!” Roman shouted. He backed up a little, allowing the pee stream to actually drench his face, and spluttered in rage as he realized what it was. By getting some in his mouth. “WHAT IS THIS?!”

    Roman looked straight up, revenge brewing in his eyes.

    Ruby was loathe to take her eyes off of him, but she found herself looking up too.

    They found a flying Faunus with nine tails… and a Corgi lowering his leg.

    Roman had never looked as mad as he did in that second.

    “Great aim, Huey,” Toshika praised the Battle Corgi.

    Huey looked prouder than she’d ever seen.

    “YOU!” Roman shouted at her.

    Ruby couldn’t help herself. She was horrified as she realized what had happened, but also couldn’t stop the giggles from escaping her mouth.

    “My turn,” Toshika said.

    And with that, she stopped holding them in the air.

    Roman whipped his cane up towards her and started firing, but she was falling too fast for him to track. She arrested her momentum just before she hit the ground, making sure to set Huey down gently as well, and landed in a perfect three-point superhero landing with her prosthetic leg doing the planting.

    A ripple of purple starfield erupted out from her and enveloped Roman, tossing him at an extremely high speed into the sign of From Dust Till Dawn. The force was so much that he actually sank into the metal sign a little.

    As Roman was slowly falling off the dent he’d made in the sign, groaning in pain the whole time, Toshika straightened up. “Red Reaper,” she acknowledged Ruby with a tilt of the head. “Care for some assistance?” The question was rather moot as she had already interfered, but she found it amusing to say it anyways.

    Ruby was gaping at her. “That. Was. So. COOL!” she squealed, almost dropping Crescent Rose as she nerded out over Toshika. “How did you do that? Were you flying?” Her eyes drifted over the orbs spinning above Toshika’s head momentarily and she gasped. “ARE THOSE YOUR WEAPONS?” she squealed even louder, entirely forgetting what they were doing. “OH MY OUM, ARE YOU A HUNTRESS?!”

    “Semblance, yes, yes, and no, respectively,” Toshika answered her calmly. She stuck out a tail towards Ruby as an offer of handshake. Roman finally dropped off the sign and face planted on the sidewalk, groaning in pain again. “I’m Toshika Hana Corona. And you are?”

    Ruby seemed a little startled at the offer of a tail shake, but she exuberantly grabbed the tail and accepted that shake after a moment. “I’m Ruby Rose!” she exclaimed, putting her hands on her hips proudly.

    Toshika withdrew her tail and grinned out the side of her mouth, never letting her eyes leave Roman. Said criminal was starting to get up. “Pleased to meet you,” she said. “Now let’s kick some bad guy ass.”

    Ruby’s eyes widened and she looked over to Roman. Then they narrowed and she twirled Crescent Rose around, getting into a combat pose again. “Yes. Let’s.

    Roman groaned again, sounding very put out. “Two against one isn’t very fair,” he complained, finally straightening up and outright glaring death at Toshika.

    “It’s three against one,” Toshika pointed out, nodding down to Huey.

    Both Roman and Ruby looked where she’d indicated. They had very different reactions.

    “IT’S A ZWEI!” Ruby squealed, bringing her hands to her face. “He’s so adorable!”

    Roman on the other hand looked furious again. “Your dog…” he muttered, tilting his head down. “He peed on me.”

    Ruby giggled again, but Toshika just grinned. “Yes.”

    Why.

    “I told him to.”

    “I see,” Roman acknowledged. “Then I’m not holding back.”

    Toshika blinked, then Roman was no longer where he was. “Say wha-”

    That was all she managed to get out as a truly ludicrous amount of explosive energy hit her side. It tossed her and Ruby to the right, as neither had been expecting it.

    Toshika immediately sent out a weak pulse of gravity from herself to push the smoke away. It didn’t do much, but it did allow her to see that Roman had vanished. She quickly looked towards the ladder on the nearby building and found him rapidly scaling it.

    Ruby coughed, waving smoke away. “Where’d he go?” she asked.

    “There,” Toshika said, pointing at Roman. At the same time, she enveloped him in her Semblance, increasing gravity’s hold on him by a factor of three.

    The man stopped going up the ladder, turned around, and glared death at her again. Then he kept climbing, struggling all the while.

    Toshika could end this. End him. With a snap of her fingers.

    But the group wanted to keep canon on track until a massive showdown at the Fall of Beacon. And by showdown, they meant a massive, overwhelming disco dance rave and showoff party. Something so final, so spectacular, it would not only demonstrate to the world just who they were and why it was a bad idea to mess with them, but as a message to the villains. A very clear message.

    Plus, Toshika may or may not have come up with it in the first place and may or may not (oh who was she kidding) find the entire idea absolutely gods damned hilarious, so she was one hundred and fifty percent on board.

    Thus, in pursuit of that, she didn’t increase his gravity by a factor of 100 and pancake him into the pavement.

    Ruby followed her finger and gasped. “He’s getting away!” she cried.

    “He thinks he is,” Toshika ground out. She turned her head to look at the owner of From Dust Till Dawn. “You okay down here?”

    He just grunted. The man really didn’t say much, did he?

    Toshika nodded and turned back to see Roman almost all the way up. “Let’s go, Ruby,” she said. A moment later she, Ruby, and Huey were lifted into the air by glowing purple starfields and were accelerating towards the top of the building.

    “Woooaaah!” Ruby exclaimed, holding onto her scythe for dear life. “We’re flying?!”

    “Yeahp,” Toshika nodded. “Easier than climbing.”

    “That’s true,” she admitted.

    Roman disappeared over the lip of the building’s roof for a moment… and then Toshika and Ruby landed right behind him.

    He paused in his running away, still facing away from them. He then proceeded to actually growl. Apparently Toshika had made him very, very angry. “Persistent,” he accused.

    The fact he was still standing straight up despite the gravity on him was telling of how strong he was.

    Before Ruby or Toshika could say anything, a loud rumbling of jet engines began to come closer from the other side of the building. A bullhead sprang up from cover and into the air, its searchlight illuminating them both.

    The door opened, and Toshika finally got to see how he got into the cabin.

    Roman fucking jumped.

    Under the effects of three times Remnant's gravity.

    Clearly he was far more skilled than she’d expected.

    He sighed even as the bullhead’s engine whine turned into more of a roar due to the added weight he was imparting to the aircraft. Toshika hadn’t instructed her Semblance to stop affecting him, and so it still did.

    She was honestly tempted to leave him that way permanently, a sparkly purple starfield man who had to work extremely hard to move, but she knew it would just train his muscles and make him a more effective opponent next time. She’d let him out of her Semblance once the bullhead escaped to a certain distance, giving Cinder (and Salem by extension) invalid information about her range limit.

    “End of the line, Red, Foxy, and dog,” he announced, holding up a Fire Dust crystal. He spat his nickname for Huey. It seemed the man was holding a grudge against Huey personally about getting peed on.

    Roman tossed the crystal towards them and aimed his cane.

    Toshika looked around, seeing an incoming Deputy Headmistress, so stopped herself from performing her first course of action. As funny as ‘No U’ing Roman Torchwick would be, Glynda needed to ‘save’ them.

    He fired and the explosion erupted… straight into Glynda’s hastily erected shield.

    “Woo hoo hoo hoo!” Roman prematuely celebrated, then blinked. “Huh?”

    Glynda was not amused.

    Things proceeded pretty much as the show’s events did, right up until Cinder entered the fight.

    Then Toshika started helping.

    Cinder’s flames were directed back at her, she tossed the Bullhead around, and even ensured Cinder lost her footing on the inside of the craft multiple times by redirecting her personal gravity sideways.

    But she still let her go. Not without grinning unrepentantly at a glaring faux Maiden, however.

    ...Who stared at her like she was an insect, but also like she was confused.

    Was it possible that due to her dual origin, Cinder remembered her as a ‘minion’ of Tall, Dark, Sexy and Evil, but only barely?

    Toshika shrugged and jostled the bullhead again as a parting shot.

    She’d figure it out later. Hilariously, no doubt.

    Then Ruby asked for Glynda’s autograph, and the Huntress was very much not happy with either of them.




    Police stations suck. Especially when you’re in the interrogation room being lectured by a woman with a stick up her ass so legendary it deserves an origin story.

    “If it was up to me, you’d be sent home… with a pat on the back.”

    Ruby grinned wide.

    “And a slap on the wrist!” Glynda continued, bringing her riding crop down just an inch shy of Ruby and Toshika’s hands. Ruby flinched back and squeaked in surprise.

    Toshika didn’t move.

    Instead, her eyes grew hard and she glared at Glynda. “One more inch. I dare you,” she challenged.

    “And what do you have to say for yourself?” Glynda fired back, entirely ignoring her challenge. “Toshika Hana Corona. Ruby Rose has the benefit of youthful ignorance, but you?” Her own eyes grew hard. “You should know better.”

    Toshika smirked and snorted. “Know better than interfering in a battle between a trained, Aura using criminal and a young girl?” she scoffed. “I’d do it again if I had to. Ruby was outmatched. I don’t regret aiding her.”

    Glynda’s hard look softened somewhat for a moment, then she toughened up again. “You have a point,” she admitted. “Why chase him afterwards, though?”

    “I believed he could be captured by the two of us,” Toshika reasoned. “I didn’t expect a bullhead and a very high powered Fire Semblance accomplice.”

    Glynda frowned at the mention of Cinder. “Yes, she was a surprise. I’m glad I got there in time.”

    “Me too,” Toshika agreed.

    “I’m… sorry, and happy you saved us too, Miss Huntress,” Ruby apologized adorably.

    Glynda sighed. “Like I said, you should get a pat on the back and a slap on the wrist and be sent home,” she repeated herself. Another sigh, this one long-suffering, emanated from her. “But… there’s someone here that would like to meet you.” She then looked at Toshika, sighing again. “Both of you.”

    Toshika shrugged. Ruby was obviously intrigued.

    And out of the shadows, despite the delay, Ozpin arrived with a plate of cookies in the same way he’d done so in the show.

    The man had showmanship, you had to give him that.

    “Ruby Rose,” he greeted her, leaning close. “You… have silver eyes.”

    They had their discussion, Ruby ate cookies like a vacuum cleaner, and Toshika tuned them out. She’d be addressed eventually.

    “You want to come to my school?”

    “More than anything.”

    Ozpin smiled and looked to Glynda. She grunted and rolled her eyes.

    “Well okay.”

    Ruby went wide eyed with glee… and then it was Toshika’s turn.

    “Toshika Hana Corona,” Ozpin turned to her.

    “Headmaster Ozpin,” she stated, greeting him with a nod of her head and fox ears.

    Funnily enough, her weapons had been circling above her head the whole time. The police really hadn’t wanted to try and stop a gravity controller from doing what she wanted. They hadn’t actually been that worried, only grumbling at her refusal to hand over her Balls, which must have been because of Glynda and Ozpin’s presence.

    “Headmaster and not Professor?” Ozpin asked, curious.

    “I’m entering your school tomorrow, Headmaster,” she informed him. “It’s just polite.”

    Ozpin searched her eyes for a few moments. “Something tells me you’re not usually the type to be respectful,” he gleaned.

    Toshika smirked and crossed her arms. “You’re right,” she agreed, nodding. “I’m being nice to you though as so far you haven’t shown yourself to have a stick up your ass.”

    Glynda glared at her, but Ozpin just smiled, amused. “I’m glad I’ve made such a good impression,” he genuinely said. “So you’re coming to my school?”

    Ruby finally zoned back in and squealed, turning to look at the fox Faunus. Toshika nodded to both of them.

    “Yup. I have an acceptance letter from you right here,” she said, reaching down into her cleavage.

    Because of course that’s where she stored it. It was actually a highly convenient storage space given her bust size… and the look of shock on Glynda’s face and the slight twitch to Ozpin’s was more than worth the way it painted her. Ruby's adorable blush just made it better.

    She dropped the Jumpchain-provided letter on the table in front of Ozpin and sat back, grinning.

    “You can’t possibly expect us to believe that this is legitimate!” Glynda growled her way, eyes flaring with indignant anger.

    Toshika just smirked back, eyeing the letter’s obvious Beacon Huntsman Academy letterheading and paper patterns.

    Ozpin raised an eyebrow at her, but proceeded to sigh and open up the letter. He read down it, apparently finding everything in order. “It’s an older letter of acceptance, but it checks out,” he acknowledged, then held it out to hand it back to her.

    Glynda scowled even harder. She huffed and turned away, her nose pointing to the ceiling.

    Toshika’s eyes widened a little at Ozpin’s phrasing. From his knowing lilt and almost twinkling eyes, he was aware of the meme. But how?

    ...Maybe it was one of the other’s doing?

    They had been having rather in-depth discussions about the Internet and spreading the joy of memes to Remnant… and that would explain the far more advanced network, with websites even, she’d managed to connect to earlier that day. Now that she was thinking about it, Roman’s metric increase in competency might also be due to whatever they’d all fluffed up. And if those things were changed… she was going to have to play things close to the chest.

    Like I can play anything away from my chest, she joked silently. Ozpin’s polite cough dashed the joke against the large hills before she could get further in her internal shenanigans, though.

    “Thank you, Headmaster,” she managed, attempting to look cool and mysterious. “To be clear, I’m accepted officially?”

    It didn’t exactly work, but an attempt was made.

    “So you are,” the hidden wizard acknowledged. “I hope to see you at Initiation.”

    She folded the letter up and slid it back down between her boobs, causing Ruby to blush again and look away for a moment, then grinned wider. “Sweet.” She knew trolling Ozpin would be great, but experiencing it in person was even better than she’d imagined. And it seemed he could give just as good as he got… for her entry level, anyways.

    He still had much to learn in the Way of the Meme.

    She turned to the still lightly blushing Ruby and gave her a thumbs up. “Guess we’re both joining your sister!”

    Ruby squealed with joy and tackled her in an abrupt hug. “Yay, we’re going to Beacon!”
     
  7. Threadmarks: Chapter 2
    Jonakhensu

    Jonakhensu I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Team SALTY
    Chapter 2

    “Who are you?” Yang demanded, her arms crossed. She looked Toshika up and down with a discerning gaze, not missing the fact that she’d walked onto the Beacon transport ship next to her sister. Nor did Toshika miss the few seconds of jealousy Yang allowed to slip out at her chest.

    Toshika opened her mouth to introduce herself, but found the little red reaper was faster.

    “This is Toshika!” Ruby said, excited. “She helped me try to stop a criminal last night!”

    Yang blinked at her sister, but she didn’t look surprised. “Of course you did,” she deadpanned.

    Toshika opened her mouth to try and introduce herself again, but Ruby cut her off… again.

    “She’s so cool! She’s got this gravity Semblance and a dog and weapon balls and-” Ruby splurged on and on about Toshika, leading the woman in question to sigh and shake her head.

    Yang slowly processed her sister’s splurgefest. “A dog?” she asked.

    A loud “BORK!” from behind Toshika rang out, and the purple and navy blue form of Huey trotted out from behind her tails.

    Yang was speechless for several moments.

    “...Your dog looks like my dog,” she said, finally able to tear her eyes away from Huey. She sent a curious, but more accepting look at Toshika than she had before. “Only, like, purple.”

    You’re the best dog ever, Huey, Toshika internally praised him. That was going to be a whole lot harder without you.

    She smiled at Yang and seemed to think of something. “Is your dog named Zwei?” she asked.

    Yang chuckled and nodded. “Ruby told you, didn’t she,” she knowingly asked.

    “It was somewhere in the waterfall of words, yeah,” Toshika jokingly agreed.

    Ruby was still going on and on about her adventure, entirely forgetting that either of them were there. Yang smiled at her, sent Toshika a pair of rolled eyes, and then glomped her sister.

    “Oh, I can’t believe my baby sister’s going to Beacon with me!” she exclaimed, shocking Ruby out of her rapid fire word storm. “This is the best day ever!”

    Ruby wheezed from her sister’s tight hug. “Pwease stop.”

    Things continued on as they had in canon, with Toshika engaging in the sister’s conversation nonsensically, up until the news began talking about Roman.

    Toshika glared at the screen. “That’s the guy,” she announced, annoyance in her tone. Her tails were twitching back and forth, clearly agitated.

    Ruby and Yang looked over to the news. “Hey, that is the guy!” Ruby confirmed.

    Yang looked at the two of them askance. “Roman Torchwick?” she asked, gaping. “You two fought Roman Torchwick?”

    “Would’ve beaten him too if it wasn’t for his meddling accomplice and a bullhead,” Toshika deadpanned.

    “Pride levels of sister rising,” Yang announced, squeezing Ruby again.

    Ruby then remembered something and burst out giggling.

    Yang let her sister go a little and looked at her askance. “What’s so funny?”

    Ruby could barely breathe due to her giggling. She just gestured to Huey and bent over, giggles turning into full blown laughter.

    Toshika took pity on the confused blondeshell. “I had Huey pee on him.”

    Yang stared at her, shocked, before she too burst out laughing.




    It’s funny how five years can seem like such a long time and such a short time. Between classes, additional training, social niceties, dealing with Ironwood, running a huntsman academy, helping out both his mother and father, and getting kidnapped more times than seemed credible, Malachite had very little time to himself. He didn’t mind, though, preferring being active to sitting around doing nothing for too long. Of course, it helped that some of what he did to help his mother amounted to playing games. On the other hand, introducing the concept of microtransactions to his sister was probably a mistake, no matter how profitable it was to the family.

    Still, over the years, a lot had happened. His prosthetic arm had proven a massive boon when he worked on building his weapon, Verdant Edge, just in the time saved not picking up another tool in order to seat a specific part or another. It also held a number of nice surprises, a must when the White Fang kept trying to capture him. Apparently, he was a favored target for showing their displeasure at how his parents ran their companies, which was complete bullshit. They treated all of their workers the same, to the extent they could. It wasn’t his father’s fault that Atlas refused to let faunus work on the more secretive components of the military hardware the company produced.

    Malachite shook the idle thoughts off. This was no time to get lost in his own head. He was on his way to Beacon, away from the petty politics of Atlas, to learn how to be a Huntsman. He would gladly leave the stuffy parties and meetings to Sabah. At least his sister seemed to enjoy the game. He would much rather work at improving their designs and innovating new technologies, blending concepts from his memories with the realities of this world.

    And he was doing it again. Looking around, Malachite decided to engage in one of his favorite past times: Weapon watching. It is always interesting to see what new and ingenious things people come up with. Mechashift and dust allowed weapons to do things that should, by all the rules of his old universe, be impossible. His Verdant Wedge was no exception, of course, even if it was admittedly less complicated than some he had seen in Weapons Magazine.

    Now there was an interesting choice. Fairly standard rapier, with a rotating dustcaster. It definitely wasn’t something he would have chosen, but, then again, he didn’t tend towards finesse. His gaze traveled up from the weapon, interested in what kind of person would choose it, and stared.

    That was Weiss Schnee. Weiss Schnee was on an airship heading to Beacon Academy. Weiss Schnee was going to be a huntress. Weiss Schnee was going to be a huntress, and was going to be training at Beacon.

    It was official. Someone was laughing at him.

    Malachite sighed and made his way over to the Shnee heiress. Once he was a respectful distance behind her and slightly to her right, he announced himself, using his Proper Atlesian Voice. “Hello, Miss Schnee. I must admit I was not expecting to see you here.”

    Weiss’ flinch before she turned, showing him a proper uppercrust smile, was hard to miss. “Hello,” she returned. She took a moment to look him over, rather obviously judging him based on his clothing choices. Malachite suppressed a grin. He knew his chosen outfit would look only slightly out of place in an upper class party. Really, all he needed to do to properly fit in was remove the visible armor. “I am sorry to say that, while I vaguely recognize you, I cannot place your name.”

    Malachite gave a polite, if vaguely friendly smile, appropriate for their respective stations and level of social contact. “I find that I can’t take offense to that,” he said. “If I were in your position, I would also have a hard time picking a face out of an audience, and I tended to avoid going to your father’s parties when I had the choice to do so.” Holding out a hand, he added, “That said, I am surprised your father hasn’t mentioned me before.”

    Weiss, who had been reaching for his hand, stopped. “I am not looking for a relationship currently,” she coldly stated.

    Malachite laughed, quickly speaking, hoping to stop Weiss from taking offence. “Sorry, I wasn’t expecting you to jump to that conclusion. No offence, but I wouldn’t consider dating you, either, at least not yet.”

    The glare Weiss settled on him informed Malachite that he had screwed up. “And why is that, exactly?”

    “It is nothing against you,” Malachite quickly insisted. “It’s just that I don’t know you well enough to think about courting you, and merging our families might actually be illegal.” Pausing for a moment as the thought struck him, he muttered, “Note to self, ask Sabah about mergers and antitrust laws.” Shaking the errant thought off, he turned back to Weiss. “Sorry about that, sometimes my mind gets away from me.” Smiling slightly, he extended his hand again, saying, “Allow me to properly introduce myself, Malachite Seolfor, second in line to the Seolfor fortune. Long live Sabah.”

    “Seolfor?” Wiess muttered, her brow furrowing as she took Malachite’s hand. Malachite hesitated for a second before deciding to shake it gently, rather than bring it to his hand as courtly manners demanded. It wouldn’t do to potentially send mixed signals, after all. “That name is definitely familiar, though I am having difficulty placing it.”

    “I think we’ve cost the Schnee Dust Company somewhere around twenty percent of their generator contracts in Atlas over the last five years,” Malachite offered.

    Weiss stiffened. “I remember Father mentioning that a time or two,” she said frostily.

    Malachite shrugged. That was just business, after all, and he had come to Beacon, in part, to avoid as much of that particular minefield as possible. “We had some interesting innovations, that’s all.” There was a moment of awkward silence before Malachite continued, “Still, I’m not heading to Beacon to talk business. That’s actually what brought me over here.” Malachite paused for a moment, trying to ensure his question came out as honestly curious rather than accusing, “What brings the Shnee heiress to Beacon?”

    The look Weiss leveled upon Malachite informed him exactly how incredibly stupid she found his question. “I am going to be a huntress. That should have been fairly obvious.”

    Malachite winced before nodding. “Right, allow me to rephrase that. Why would someone like… Hmm, it’s really hard to put this in a way that won’t come off as insulting.” He sighs and continues, “Nothing for it, then. Why is someone like you, who has a lucrative singing career and who is the future owner of one of the largest companies in the world, becoming a hunter?”

    Weiss opened her mouth to reply, but Malachite started talking again, cutting her off without realizing it immediately.

    “I mean, it’s great that you want to be a huntress and all. More props to you and all that, but… oh, right, sorry about that. You were saying?”

    “It’s like you said. I am a Schnee. I have a legacy of honor to uphold,” Weiss stated. “Once I realized I was capable of fighting, there was no longer a question of what I would do with my life.”

    “Come on, that can’t be all of…” Malachite trailed off as he noticed something about Weiss’ face that had definitely not been there at the last concert he’d been to. Honestly, he was mentatlly berating himself for having not noticed the scar across her left eye sooner. “Weiss,” Malachite continued, much more seriously than before. “What happened to your eye?”

    “What?” the heiress snapped. “Upset that my perfect face is ruined?”

    “No! That’s not it at all,” Malachite hurried to reassure her. “It’s just… a wound like that… something broke your Aura, and then you would have had to go without treatment long enough that it wouldn’t heal cleanly. That’s not something that should have happened before we’re going on missions, and I would have read about it if you got kidnapped. I know how good the press is about finding out about those, after all.”

    Seriously, after the third time, the White Fang should have figured out kidnapping him was a bad idea. Then again, a surprising number of his kidnappers were currently part of the Seolfor security force. His father was a master at creative sentencing for the more repentant members who had ended up well over their heads. And another surprisingly large number were currently students at Soelfor’s College.

    “My father,” Weiss began, likely not realizing just how cold her tone was, “decided that, if I wanted to be a huntress, I would need to prove myself. I did not do as well as I had hoped, though I did succeed.”

    “I see,” Malachite replied. It was trivial to read between the lines. It sounded like Weiss Schnee had much more of her grandfather in her than he had feared. As far as he was concerned, this was very much a good thing. Really, there was only one course of action he could see himself taking at this moment.

    “Miss Schnee, no,” he stopped himself and reached out, placing his left hand on her shoulder. “Weiss, I want you to know that I am not here to spy on you. I did not even know you were going to be here until I saw you. What do you say we keep Atlas in Atlas and Beacon in Beacon?”

    Weiss tilted her head but didn’t knock Malachite’s hand off her shoulder. He took it as a good sign. “What, exactly, are you proposing?”

    “I’m suggesting we do our best to pretend we’re just two students; leave as much of our business lives outside of Beacon as much as possible. I came here to get away from political games, and I’m sure you did as well. You could have gone to Atlas Academy, after all.”

    “And why should I?”

    “Our families may be business rivals,” Malachite stated, “but that doesn’t mean we have to be at each other’s throats.” He took a half step back, releasing Weiss’ shoulder in the process. “If you ever want to talk to someone, who at least knows roughly where you’re coming from, I promise that none of it will get back to your father.” He smirked and added, “I won’t even tell my parents about anything business related you might accidentally let slip, unless you ask me to.”

    Weiss gave him a suspicious look. “You don’t expect me to actually fall for that, do you?”

    Malachite sighed. “Look, Weiss, I don’t know what I can do to prove I’m serious. Considering what I’ve heard about your father from mine, I can’t even blame you for being worried. But I don’t care about your father. I really don’t.”

    “You say that,” Weiss acknowledged. “I have yet to meet very many people who mean it.”

    “Oh, I mean it, I just don’t have a good way to prove it,” Malachite insisted. “Still, the offer is open, whenever you want to take it. Everyone needs someone to confide in, and, while it should be your team, I’ll be available if you ever need to talk, or get a hug, or just need someone to vent to if your team gets on your nerves. I’m a pretty good listener.” Holding out his hand again, he finished, “What do you say? Friends?”

    Weiss gave a small smile, barely more than a twitch of the lips before she took Malachite’s hand and replied, “Allies of convenience. We’ll see about friends later.”

    “I’ll take what I can get,” Malachite agreed with a smile. “So, excited to get started with training?” The two made small talk for the rest of the flight, watching the scenery pass by in the large windows.




    It was a fun trip. Jaune still barfed and earned his nickname from Yang, but Toshika at least redirected the vomit off of her shoes to avoid that little bit of resentment from occurring.

    Their transport sailed towards Beacon, Glynda showed up via hologram, and time moved on.

    Beacon was beautiful. That part was accurate. It also had several appearance upgrades from the show, even the latest version before the Fall, as it was a real place for Toshika. Ozpin must’ve had master architects build the entire campus!

    ...Or maybe he did it himself, Toshika mused. All that time? If he didn’t pick up some other skills than bare minimum secretive planning, he’s a crappy immortal.

    So it was that a blondeshell, a redshell with nine tails and fox ears, a little red reaper in a red cape, and a dark purple and navy blue Battle Corgi stepped off the transport onto Beacon’s pavement, all as happy as they could be.

    Yang still ditched them, though. And Ruby still encountered a cart of dust belonging to a certain white haired Heiress... because Toshika was too busy staring at all the cool buildings and technology to notice and intercept it.

    And so the argument began.




    One Metric DIKEIDO after arriving on Remnant

    “Well that exam was easier than I expected it to be.” He smirked as he walked onto the Beacon Academy landing pad. It seemed that the exam for those without prior schooling was mostly combat based, and if you passed you were tutored and tested until you were going to Beacon the next day. Oh well, that didn’t matter to ‘Lorem Ipsum’, not really. He was just glad to be off of the transport. ‘Time to get to work.’ he thought with a chuckle as he walked past the puking form of Jaune Arc, just in time to see a blonde bombshell run off, causing a girl I vaguely recognized as Ruby Rose to become extremely dizzy and fall onto a cart of luggage.

    “Huh, wonder who the redhead that’s with her is…”




    Finally, Professor Goodwitch overrode the news broadcast Malachite had been ignoring, welcoming the students to Beacon, even if it had been about one of his more successful kidnappers. He and Weiss quickly made their way off the airship and began to look around as they waited for Weiss’ luggage to come off. Apparently she needed to see to it personally, even if she was still planning on letting the school’s porters move it for her.

    Not nearly as concerned about his own luggage, Malachite took the time to look around. Each of the airships was offloading its passengers, causing the docking area to be crowded with friends meeting each other, people trying to check on their luggage, and more than a few just being thankful to be out of the air and on solid ground again. Not for the first time, Malachite rejoiced in his decision to skip taking Motion Sickness as a drawback. Off in the distance there was a flash of reflected light as a girl produced a folding scythe larger than she was. “Now, that’s impressive,” Malachite noted.

    “What is?” Wiess asked, having been looking around for her luggage. One of the school’s porters was stacking multiple metallic cases onto a trolley behind her. “Be careful with those!” she snapped as one of the cases started to slip. The porter managed to get it under control before it could fall.

    “Someone over there has a really interesting looking scythe,” Malachite explained. “I wonder who made it.” Starting to make his way towards her, Weiss at his side, he wondered how effective such a large and generally unwieldy weapon could be. He’d be able to ask her soon enough.




    The first week since Yache’s arrival on Remnant had passed as if in a single, blazing moment. Study, study, forest clean ups, more study, with occasional breaks for miscellaneous things such as reading, going shopping for some base Remnant necessities, and eating.

    But even routines eventually have to end, and so it was the day that Beacon would finally wake up from its slumber as students began to arrive. Yache herself had passed the entrance exams with a visible lack of effort, much to Glynda’s annoyance, yet at the same time genuine surprise. She always found time to appreciate a student who was actually willing to put in the work, even if they were cheating via not needing to sleep nearly as much as a normal person would.

    But either way, Yache was now standing somewhere in the general mass of students. Which was, to her surprise, rather thin all things considered. Even despite Beacon’s status as an elite academy for a rather dangerous profession, there were still far fewer people than she’d expected to see.

    Aside from that minor curiosity, though, everything was mostly how she remembered it from her days before the rather abrupt departure from her world. Most first years grouping up based on either pre-existing connections or the gravitational pull of random extroverts. Others stood aside, awkwardly waiting for whatever scene was going to invite them into their new life of study.

    Yache, never one to betray the ageless code that most introverts of the various worlds seemed to follow, was part of the latter group. She stood aside from the general mass and observed. There was a guy with green hair, arguing with a white haired princess who was rather obviously Weiss Schnee. Yache couldn’t hear what it was they were talking about from there, mostly because of the background noise, but come on, if Weiss wasn’t arguing with someone this early on, she’d… do nothing probably. She wasn’t much for bets.

    For another curious arrival, there was a woman with a prosthetic leg, fox ears, and… nine tails? A kitsune? Huh. Weird. I thought that Faunus could only have a single animal trait. Aaaand she’s got a floating corgi. Bloody hell, what even is this version of Remnant?

    There were other people that Yache recognized. Ruby Rose with her sister were next to the kitsune, seemingly friends with each other, and that blonde mop along with the others from his canon group were around as well. There were also lots of people she simply did not recognize.

    And so Yache continued standing there, people watching and waiting until the show finally began. Wasn’t like she had anything else to do. Approach someone and start up a friendly conversation? Pssh, who were you taking her for? Even becoming a man-eating spider monster with actual honest-to-god magic at her fingertips wouldn’t change an introvert.




    Malachite walked sedately next to Weiss as they made their way along the airship docks toward Beacon. He was keeping an eye on where he had seen the scythe wielder, hoping for a chance to speak with her. They were just getting close to where he assumed she would be when a small horde of people suddenly crowded around her before rushing off, leaving the girl spinning in their wake. The odd fox Faunus - seriously, who had ever heard of a Faunus with both ears and a tail, let alone nine - seemed to be distractedly looking around.

    “Wait, are we supposed to go to our dorms?” the red clad girl asked as she spun. From this close, Malachite could tell that she was probably a good year or two younger than the others nearby. “Do we have dorms? I don’t know what I’m supposed to be doing,” she complained plaintively, before collapsing backward.

    Unfortunately, Beacon’s porters apparently weren’t paid very much, as the ones who had been pushing Weiss’ cart along had decided going directly behind the spinning girl was a perfect idea, causing her to land on the cases.

    “What are you doing?!" Weiss demanded, stomping forward. Malachite winced at the pitch her voice hit. She sounded far too petulant there.

    Weiss' shriek startled the fox Faunus out of her distractions. She spun around on her heel and opened her mouth to say something, but upon seeing Weiss approaching her friend… looked amused?

    “Sorry,” the younger girl returned apologetically, offering one of the cases to Weiss.

    “Sorry?” Weiss snapped, still sounding even younger than Ruby. It’s weird how tone can change one’s apparent age like that. “Do you have any idea what kind of damage you could have caused?”

    Toshika snickered and reached over to her flying purple corgi, petting him a little. To anyone else she seemed irrationally relaxed within the proximity of that much dust, but she figured even if the whole cart went up, the worst it could do was tickle her.

    She eyed the man next to Weiss up and down, biting her lip in thought. Something about him was nagging at her… of course, Toshika's once overs tended to look like she was undressing you with her eyes, multiple times in a row. Even if she wasn't.

    Uh…” Ruby began, obviously still out of it from both her recent spinning and Weiss’ sharp tone. She obviously wasn’t used to dealing with upset people, or at least couldn’t see why Weiss was so upset.

    Malachite found himself sympathizing, considering he couldn’t tell what had the Schnee so upset, either. It wasn’t like she’d be dumb enough to bring an entire supply of dust with her or something, right? His own dust supply was carefully stored away in an armored and padded crate, after all.

    “Uh,” Ruby began again, helpfully picking up one of the cases and holding toward Weiss. “Here-”

    Give me that!” Weiss ordered, grabbing the case out of her hands.

    Malachite sighed softly. So much for good first impressions with a fellow new student. If Weiss wanted to make friends, this was not the way to start. She snapped open the case, allowing Malachite to see two neat rows of dust vials. Apparently Weiss was dumb enough to wander around with a loose supply of the stuff. She took out a vial of red dust before snapping the case back closed, causing a slight cloud of dust to be ejected.

    Toshika's eyes widened and she grinned. She took a slightly ready stance, her tails flaring out as if preparing to grapple something.

    Or someone, given how she was eyeing Weiss. Just like a fox eyeing its prey, ironically.

    “Uh, Weiss?” Malachite tried, hoping to get the Schnee’s attention.

    “This is dust. Mined and purified from the Schnee quarry,” Weiss continued, either not hearing him or ignoring him. Either way, Malachite noticed more dust drifting away as Weiss emphasized her points by shaking the vial.

    “Um…” the younger girl said again. She really should try using more syllables. Mono-syllabic non-words were not going to appease an upset heiress.

    “Weiss!” Malachite tried again, sharper this time. Again, he was ignored. The air was beginning to get cloudy with the amount of dust Weiss had accidentally shaken out of the bottle, and the fox was starting to vibrate with visible anticipation.

    "What are you, braindead?” Weiss demanded unhelpfully. “Dust! Fire, water, lightning, energy!"

    Yes, Weiss, because at least two of those things aren’t essentially the same, Malachite thought to himself before trying again. “Weiss! Pay attention!”

    Unfortunately, she continued her rant as the red clad girl began sniffling.

    “Are you even listening to me? Is any of this sinking in?! What do you have to say for yourself?”

    “Ah, ah, aaah…” Ruby continued, about to sneeze. With how much dust was in the air around them...

    “Shit!” Malachite exclaimed, swiping a hand upward and releasing a burst of wind right as the girl finally sneezed.

    It was very nearly too little too late. The fire dust that had been tickling the girl’s nose ignited, following the trail toward Weiss before being suddenly directed upward by the newly formed wind current, detonating in a fireball … with electric discharges and ice formations within it… over their heads.

    At nearly the same instant as Malachite redirected the explosion, Toshika lifted off. She bounded at, and bodily into, Weiss, wrapping her arms around her waist, and pulled both of them through Weiss' cart onto the ground on the other side. One of her tails reached out along the way and grabbed Ruby around her waist, yanking her through behind her.

    The shrieks of both girls were delicious to Toshika.

    Toshika landed on the other side with a triumphant cry, cradling the two girls in her tails. "GOALLLL!" she yelled at the top of her lungs.

    While everyone was distracted by Toshika’s antics, the vial of dust Weiss had been holding which had somehow managed to escape rapid detonation sailed off, bouncing on the ground a few times. It rolled to a stop against a pair of black, high-heeled boots. Bending down without taking her eyes off her book, the shoes’ owner picked up the vial. With a straightened back she finally looked away from her book enough to inspect the snowflake logo of the Schnee Dust Company on the vial. Lowering said book to the side, she began making her way toward the group.

    What?” Weiss demanded, struggling her way out of the grip Toshika had on her. Jumping back several feet, she drew her rapier and pointed it toward the fox Faunus. “How dare you manhandle me like that?!” she demanded.

    “Damn it, Weiss!” Malachite exclaimed, stepping between the two girls to interrupt the building tension. “I’m sure she was just trying to help.”

    Toshika tilted her head to the side. "Would you like the physical explanation or the floofy one?" she asked. Her ears followed the motion and bobbed at the ends. She seemed entirely unfazed by Weiss… her, or her rapier. "Also, for the record, it's womanhandled." She looked down at her much larger than average chest and back up to Weiss with a gigantic smirk. "As you can see."

    She made it even worse by waggling her eyebrows at the heiress.

    "BORK!" Huey helpfully chimed in, spinning in the air.

    Malachite sighed and stepped back. “Never mind, Weiss,” he muttered, shaking his head. “Have at it.” The Faunus trying to be helpful was fine, but when she decided to start actively antagonizing his… ally, if not quite friend yet, then she was on her own.

    “You… you barbarian floozy!” Weiss indignantly exclaimed, brandishing her rapier at Toshika. “Do you even know who I am?

    "Some form of ice cream, pretty sure," Toshika snarked back, the unrepentant smirk on her face getting wider. Oh yeah, she was enjoying messing with this particular woman. "Can't be who you're supposed to be given what you were just doing with your dust-"

    Ruby was having trouble speaking due to the highly comfortable tail she was wrapped up in. And also the shock of being translated through space at a rate not dissimilar to when she used Crescent Rose as a travel mechanism. Finally, she got out, “I’m really, really sorry!”

    Unfortunately, this only served to make her the focus of Weiss’ ire again, causing her to ignore Toshika for the moment. “You! You dolt, this is exactly what I was talking about!” She dismissively looked the red clad girl up and down before demanding, “What are you even doing here, anyway? Aren’t you a little young to be in Beacon?”

    That was… actually a pretty fair point, actually, Malachite mused. He couldn’t recall ever hearing about Beacon letting students attend early, unlike Seolfor College, where only your abilities and attitude mattered. Then again, Beacon probably wasn’t designed from the ground up to handle educating an entire city’s population if necessary. “I’m sure-” Malachite began.

    Weiss most likely hadn’t heard him, considering she had been concentrating on the younger girl and she had started attempting to speak at roughly the same time. Neither managed to be heard intelligibly.

    Toshika wasn’t much liking this Weiss. Most likely bolstered by the man’s presence beside her, she was harping on Ruby much more than she should’ve. Clearly the cluebat of dickishness needed to be delivered ahead of schedule. And so, she wrapped more tails around Ruby and yanked her behind her while ignoring the little squeak the red reaper let out. Once she was out of sight, Toshika stood up from the ground and revealed just how she towered over the shorter heiress. She was one of the tallest of her party and she wasn’t shy about wielding that power.

    Weiss didn’t seem to notice the dark look coming over the fox Faunus’ face. “This isn’t your ordinary combat school, you know,” she said, trying to talk around the larger woman and fire more shots towards Ruby, “It’s not just sparring and practicing. We’re here to fight monsters. So, watch where you’re-”

    “Knock it off, Schnee,” Toshika stated flatly, cutting Weiss’ rant off. “This was mostly your fault anyways.” She looked to the cases around the cart and the suspiciously absent porters. “Well, yours and the porters.” Her eyes alighted back on Weiss and she narrowed them. “You can’t blame someone for sneezing.”

    “Especially after all of the dust you shook into the air,” Malachite added with a shake of his head. “Seriously, I’ve been meaning to ask, why did you even pack your dust that way?”

    Weiss was taken aback by the sudden turn in the conversation. “I don’t know what you mean,” she complained. “Everyone carries their dust in cases like this.”

    “Sure,” Malachite allowed, “when they’re taking a few vials and crystals home from the store. Now when they’re carrying a full month’s supply around.”

    “You don’t also shake your dust in the air like you’re on stage at a club,” Toshika added. She pointed at the backpack on her back with a thumb over her shoulder. “Safe Dust Handling. Something you, of all people, really should know about.”

    Weiss turned toward Malachite, demanding, “Why are you taking her side all of a sudden? What happened to being allies?”

    Malachite sighed and pinched the bridge of his nose. “I am your ally, Weiss, especially when you’re working against yourself.” He gestured to the other two girls. Toshika gave him a little wave back. “Look, you’re here because you don’t want your family’s influence to matter as much, but what’s the first thing you do when someone screws up? You snap at them like they should be scraping and bowing before you. Do you want to have a chance to make friends here or not?”

    Toshika chimed in with another little wave. “Speaking for myself, I’m on board with being at least cordial towards you if you pull the titanium rod out of your ass,” she proclaimed. “I can also become your bestest, floofiest friend, but you’ve gotta warm up a little!”

    Malachite sighed and grabbed Weiss before she could lunge at the Faunus with her rapier. “Even if some of them are ruder than they need to be.” Looking around the group, he added, “Look, let’s try starting over. I’m Malachite Seolfor.”

    Toshika’s eyes widened and she gained a massive, knowing grin. She knew exactly who he was now, and who he’d been.

    She was going to have so much fun with him… as a certain cyber boi once said; Oh, YES.
     
  8. Threadmarks: Chapter 3
    Jonakhensu

    Jonakhensu I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Team SALTY

    Chapter 3

    Before Toshika could say anything needling, though, another voice cut in from the side, causing everyone to look at the newcomer.

    “Of the Seolfor Conglomerate,” the black clad girl began. She was dressed in black and purple with an oversized bow perched on her head.

    Malachite noticed that she had at least gone through Disguises 101, as the black bow was disguising a pair of Faunus ears, but hadn’t made it through Disguises 102, as the bow didn’t at all match her outfit. Still, if wearing an ugly bow made her feel better, he wasn’t going to bother her about it. He also noticed that she was holding Weiss’ vial of fire dust in her hand.

    Blake was so obviously a Faunus, especially right next to Toshika, it was almost painful. A couple of Toshika’s tails started wagging subconsciously as she imagined how many hugs this particular Kitty would be receiving later.

    “It’s nice to be recognized, sometimes,” Malachite said.

    “Which is infamous for its heavy handed business practices, near monopoly in several sectors, and,” the hidden Faunus continued, as though Malachite hadn’t said anything, “there is the matter of the re-education camp you call a school."

    Toshika snickered under her breath. “It’s such a scam, right?” she deadpanned, eyeing Malachite with a smug, knowing grin.

    “Hey now!” Malachite refuted, mock indignantly, raising his hands in defense. “Seolfor College is a fine school, and I would trust its headmaster with my life!” Internally, he smirked a bit. Somehow, over the years, they had managed to keep the identity of the college’s head a secret. Malachite also made a note that this black clad girl most likely had sympathies for the White Fang. It wasn’t necessarily a problem, but it was definitely something to look out for.

    Stupid drawback.

    There was also something about how the other Faunus, the woman with way too many animal traits, had looked at him while making that comment, but he couldn’t quite place what it could be.

    Ignoring him, the bowed Faunus turned toward Weiss. “And Weiss Schnee, heiress to the Schnee Dust Company, one of the largest producers of energy propellants in the world.” She finished with a lilt to her voice that fairly well indicated she was not the SDC’s favorite fan.

    Weiss, apparently, didn’t notice the other girl’s tone. “See,” she said, turning toward the little red slightly gothic girl, “I’m not that difficult to recognize.”

    “The same company infamous for its controversial labor forces and questionable business partners,” the dark themed girl finished, causing Weiss to sputter indignantly.

    “As much as I hate to agree with her accusations,” Malachite began reluctantly, “you do have to admit, Weiss, some of your father’s ‘friends’ are rather unsavory.”

    Complete and total ingrates who don’t deserve to live, more like,” Toshika mumbled under her breath.

    Blake's eyebrows rose slightly and she glanced at Toshika. Whatever she saw must've been good, because she just shrugged and went back to staring accusingly at Weiss.

    “Now, you all know who the two of us are,” Malachite said, gesturing between himself and Weiss, “but would you be kind enough as to introduce yourselves as well?” Arching an eyebrow at the black haired Faunus, he added, “Unless you’d like to do the honors for the rest of the class?”

    "I'll wait," Blake declined, stepping back slightly.

    Toshika shrugged and locked her eyes on Malachite with a nearly feral grin. "Toshika Hana Corona, Floofimus Maximus, and local gravitational master," she introduced herself, bowing momentarily. With another shriek, she pulled Ruby around in front of her with her tails and put her hands on her smaller shoulders. "This is the cinnamon roll with a weapon fetish."

    "BORK!" Huey barked from his little gravitational eddy.

    "Oh right," Toshika said, nodding to the side. "That's my dog Huey."

    Malachite nodded toward the fox and the hound. “Pleasure to meet you, especially now that the arguing has stopped.” He turned toward the ‘cinnamon roll’ and asked, “I’m sorry, miss, what was your name again?”

    Next to him, Weiss nodded stiffly. Considering he had half expected the Atlesian native to stomp off by now, or lose her cool and actually try and skewer the fox Faunus, he took that as her attempting to be friendly. She probably didn’t have much practice doing so, after all.

    Ruby collected herself and brushed down her hair. She sent a momentary glare Weiss' way, but it didn't last, and she was back to her normal lovable self. "I'm Ruby Rose!" she cheerfully said. She reached to her back where her weapon was packed away. With a series of mechanical clicks, the weapon folded out of its storage form into a massive, lethal looking scythe. "And this is Crescent Rose!"

    "See? Cinnamon roll," Toshika repeated.

    Ruby narrowed her eyes and jabbed her elbow backwards into Toshika's stomach. "Ruby Rose," she declared again.

    Toshika just snickered.

    “And a pleasure to meet you as well, Ruby,” Malachite said, reaching behind his own back. “And, since you were so nice as to introduce us to Crescent Rose, I figure the least I can do is introduce you to Verdant Wedge.” With a series of clicks and snickts, the green bladed knife extended to its full six foot axe form.

    Toshika shrugged. "My Dusty Balls are above my head," she announced, gesturing to the halo of roughly fist sized metal orbs spinning around her foxy ears. She also wasn't even trying to keep a straight face while she gave their name.

    Ruby looked up at her and frowned. "You really named your weapons… that?" she deadpanned.

    "It seemed fitting," Toshika fired back. "They're metal balls that use Dust to cause effects." Her voice said she was being serious, but the almost literal twinkling eyes she wore belied her true motives.

    Ruby groaned and rolled her eyes. "You're just like Yang," she grumbled.

    Toshika grinned and closed her eyes. "Yep!"

    Weiss rolled her eyes. “Kids,” she muttered. When Malachite gave her a subtle prod with the end of Verdant Wedge’s shaft, she rolled her eyes and added, “Fine. I suppose it is pleasant enough meeting you, as well. So long as you don’t fall on any more of my things.”

    “I said I was sorry,” Ruby complained quietly. “And didn’t we,” she gestured around the group, “decide it was the workers' fault? Where are they, anyway?” A quick look around showed that, not only were no porters visible, they had somehow managed to clean up the spilled luggage and leave without being noticed. “Oohhhh, they’re good,” Ruby decided, her eyes narrowed.

    "I'm Blake," the black haired Faunus in bad disguise finally intoned.

    Toshika turned to Blake and actually looked her up and down this time, tilting her head and ears to the side curiously. She also sniffed a little bit as her eyes widened. She didn't know she could smell a Faunus, but it did make a lot of sense now that she was one.

    Well, more or less.

    "...Huh," she mused, ignoring how Blake froze under her gaze. "A bow? Really?"

    Blake suddenly found herself on the defensive and hugged her arms around her middle. "...I like it," she attempted.

    Toshika narrowed her eyes and grinned. "Suuuuuuuure," the fox faux agreed. "I won't say a thing."

    Blake narrowed her eyes in return, but nodded. "Thanks."

    Toshika nodded back, then turned her gaze to Malachite once more. Her grin only widened. "So, how many bricks did Ironwood shit when you told him? I just need to know so we can sketch out the dimensions of the statue dedicated to him we'll make out of them."

    “I’m sorry,” Malachite began, “but what are you talking about?”

    He was honestly confused. Other than the regular reports he sent the general and occasional meetings about prospective students for the school, those who weren’t able to handle the discipline of a military academy even with the allowances given to huntsmen, he rarely spoke with the man. Ironwood had always been calm and professional, rarely even raising his voice when a subordinate did something boneheaded enough to get immediately expelled from Atlas Academy. None of which explained why a random Faunus he just met would be asking about the general in the first place.

    "You knooow," she prodded teasingly, leaning forward without any care for how her chest rested on a suddenly blushing Ruby's head, "how'd he react to the news that people capable of much, much more than sufficient velocity were… showing up?" She waggled her eyebrows at him, still grinning far too knowingly.

    It took a moment for Malachite to parse the hidden message, what with the decade that had passed since he had last visited that particular website. He felt like executing a facepalm at how perfect a password that was, since it’d be very blatant and memorable for anyone in the know, but would only be seen as odd at worst for those who weren’t. Apparently, he had found the first of his fellow transplantees, or, rather, she found him. Odd, though. He thought the others had all been male.

    “One,” Malachite began, figuring he might as well confirm that he had caught the fox’s message, “I am not going to denigrate one of my family's biggest clients in front of a business rival's daughter. No offense, Weiss." The Schnee nodded her understanding. "And B… I may have glossed over a few things over the years."

    Toshika's knowing grin gained an inch. Her eyes almost sparkled, and the laughter she was laughing inside her head was obvious for all to see. "That's fair," she agreed, nodding along. Her guesstimate had been correct, which was always nice to have outright confirmed even if it was over ninety percent likely. "However I'm much more partial to the idea that while one is nice, the only true way to go is to nuke it from orbit, with another thousand rounds, at the least, standing by just in case the first one didn't take out the terrain," she counter confirmed, simultaneously confirming his confirmation of their particular methods of arrival on Remnant… and also, if he was smart, cluing him in to her identity.

    She made sure to watch his face to see the reaction. That botched dice roll might have been unexpected, but being hot as hell and messing with one's fellow Jumpers was more than enough payment to justify it. Plus, fluffy tails! And who doesn't like fluffy tails?

    Ruby was watching Toshika with a look of starstruck awe. "So cool," she quietly squealed.

    Toshika just smirked, though her ears rotating to point at the little red reaper indicated she'd heard her.

    Malachite watched Toshika watching him. That last statement was obviously some form of a clue, if only he could decipher it. Probably something to do with which of the others she was, which wasn’t as helpful as one would think… considering he had never actually met any of them before, at least not in person. That didn’t sound like a reference to Russia, so probably not that one… who was the most likely to destroy a planet again? Destroy a planet… planetary annihilation. Ah. That one. Figures.

    “I suppose that, if you wanted to tee off against an entire continent of Grimm or something, I can see where you’re coming from,” the green haired youth finally said, having had to think of a way to respond to that one. Hopefully it would confirm his guess without stating it directly or unduly worrying the others. After all, part of the reason he was here was to meet people his physical age, check out what other schools were like, and try to stop… or help… whatever was going on that he decided he didn’t need to know so long ago. Oh, how he continually kicked himself for that decision.

    Weiss poked Malachite in the side, saying, “You’re taking her seriously? What kind of a mad woman would talk about ‘taking out the terrain’? And what does she mean by nuking? And fighting a whole continent of Grimm? That’s suicidal madness! No one can pull that off!”

    Malachite patted Weiss’ arm placatingly. “No, I’m not taking her seriously, we’re talking in hypotheticals. Or at least I am,” he began, answering her questions in order. “As for talking about whole scale destruction of the landscape… I’ve had serious, though hypothetical, discussions about glassing a planet before. That’s where the entire surface of the planet is heated to the point that it becomes glass. Just talking about it doesn’t mean we’re planning on doing it or think we can actually pull it off, of course. And nuking… nuking is a reference to causing a large amount of damage at one time, based off of a theoretical weapon that, to my knowledge, has never been built on Remnant. It’s also a reference to a specific movie. The full quote is “nuke it from orbit, it’s the only way to be sure.’ As for fighting an entire continent of Grimm… I can think of a few ways to try it, but I’ll agree, doing it alone would be a very bad idea.” Malachite shot Toshika a warning look as he finished speaking, as it wouldn’t surprise him if she was planning something that foolhardy.

    “I’m sure I’ll get around to it eventually,” Toshika confirmed, her grin morphing into a self-satisfied smirk. "Pretty much all of it, actually. Except the glassing. I kinda like this planet."

    Malachite sighed as his worries were pretty much confirmed. Hopefully she’d allow the entire group to help plan the assault and wouldn’t just run off half cocked or something.

    Ruby stared at her with her eyes wide. Take on an entire continent of Grimm? How powerful was Toshika?!

    She looked at Malachite, who was clearly exchanging super secret codes with Toshika at the moment, and gulped. How powerful were both of them? And what was that about a theoretical weapon? That sounded neat.

    "As for Ironwood," Toshika continued, "when you say 'glossed over', just how in the dark is the poor dude?" she asked. "What tonnage did you end up telling him?"

    “I’ve never been the best at determining that,” Malachite admitted with a shrug. “And it’s not like he got the reference at the time. Kilo.”

    Toshika blinked at him, then snorted and shook her head. She almost broke down laughing, but held herself back for the moment. "Poor Ironwood," she lamented. "That's not remotely enough."

    “Tonnage?” Weiss asked.

    Deciding to humor her, and not seeing the harm, Malachite explained, “The first time I had an important meeting with General Ironwood, he asked why he shouldn’t just lock me up. I mentioned I had friends who would be showing up, like Toshika, here, and that they would be upset if something major happened to me. I mentioned they would be capable of creating significant damage should they need to.”

    “And you think they’d be a match for the Atlesian military?” Weiss asked, waving her national pride flag.

    Toshika snorted again and found herself unable to hold back the laughter she'd previously stopped from erupting at Malachite's total lack of clueing in the Professional Paranoid.

    Weiss’ face darkened. “What.”

    “Both of us are,” Toshika informed her, waving up and down her own body. Her smug grin never left despite the small laughs she managed to keep herself to. “We’re just nice.”

    Ruby’s jaw dropped.

    "Atlas has the largest and most advanced military in the world!" Weiss protested. "You cannot possibly be so arrogant as to think you could beat them."

    "Taking on the entire army might be hard," Malachite admitted. "But a single airship or platoon? That's a lot easier than you'd think. I could hypothetically do it with Verdant Wedge, and I expect that anyone here could handle a group of normal soldiers. That comment on tonnage is another reference to that theoretical weapon I mentioned, which explodes with the force of… a lot of dust. Probably more than has ever exploded at a single time before."

    "I'd be surprised if I even noticed them," Toshika nonchalantly added. "My method of combat usually involves entire areas of effect and lots of firepower. I don't use those particular weapons unless I have to, they've got some nasty fallout, but equivalents that don't I'm totally okay with lobbing at something I'm not particularly pleased with." A wry grin stole over her face. "And most importantly, if I am awake and we're in the same area, my enemies are very very screwed."

    It looked like Weiss was beginning to lose her temper, considering how red her face was turning and the amount of effort Malachite could see her using to remain still. “Let’s stop talking about hypothetical matchups against allies,” he suggested. “It’s much more fun talking about taking Goliaths out at five clicks."

    Alas, it was too little too late. “You… you… you arrogant, egomaniacal, deluded blowhard!” Weiss ranted, pointing at Toshika imperiously. “You’re a student! There is no way you can take on a properly trained strike force!”

    Malachite took a half-step forward, trying to quell the argument yet again. “Weiss, I was only talking about the vehicles and Atlas’ standard soldiers. One is a matter of firepower, and the others are woefully under trained when compared to a huntsman. Our Semblances and Aura give us too much of an advantage against them, even without going into specific abilities.” Giving the heiress a look over, he asked, “Have you ever sparred with the normal grunts?”

    Weiss opened her mouth to respond before Malachite clarified, “Not counting those working directly under your sister.”

    Weiss’ mouth snapped shut.

    Toshika grinned and opened her mouth to make a lewd comment, but found herself interrupted.

    “Excuse me, Miss Schnee?” A new voice began as a fairly normal and boring looking man walked up, “You may want to read this and consider what you were doing with that vial of Dust before you get angry at the young lady who sneezed.” An SDC produced dust safety pamphlet was placed in Weiss’ open hand by the brown haired man.

    Weiss took a moment to get her bearings before the pride she was infamous for reared its head. “Excuse me?” Weiss demanded, glaring at the man. “What is this?”

    “To be fair,” Malachite jumped in, trying to keep things civil, “you were the one shaking a damaged vial of dust around.”

    Weiss fumed.

    "That would be the club shaking I mentioned," Toshika chimed in.

    “That’s not the point!” she exclaimed a moment later. “She shouldn’t have knocked into my luggage!”

    “Why do you even have your dust stored in cases like that?” Malachite finally asked, having been wondering about it for the last while. “It’s not like you dedicated each case to a specific type of dust or anything.” He paused for a moment before adding, “I keep mine in an armored trunk.”

    Weiss apparently didn’t have an answer, instead growling quietly to herself before stamping over and snatching the vial of dust from Blake's hand. Blake barely looked up from her book that she had taken out some time ago.

    A brief awkward silence later, the man spoke up again. “So, uhhh… you’re all first years too, right? My name’s Lorem Ipsum, and since you were introducing weapons… Trace On.” With that a pair of swords flowed into existence in his hands. “Meet Kanshou and Bakuya. Or at least, near perfect replications of them stored as part of my Semblance. Had to learn to use them on my own though… And to be honest, I’m fairly sure that all it takes to drop anything is one at sufficient velocity. My projectile of choice is not, however, a brick. Besides, our tonnage is, at a minimum, in the giga range.” Lorem finished with a smirk directed at the multi-tailed Faunus.

    Toshika clicked her tongue against the top of her mouth and fired finger guns off at Lorem, smirking.

    “Gigatons? Really?” Malachite asked, surprised. “I don’t remember anything about that…” Under his breath, quietly enough that he doubted even the two Faunus could hear it, he muttered, “Note to self: next time, avoid things that might make me forget the planning stages.”

    “You’re the second person to use that phrase,” Weiss noted, narrowing her eyes and glaring toward Lorem. “Is that some kind of passphrase or something?”

    “Ooh… is it a conspiracy?” Ruby asked excitedly.

    Toshika snorted. "Trust me Rubes, of all the people on Remnant we are the least likely to have a conspiracy."

    Ruby froze. She stared up at Toshika in dawning horror. "You called me Rubes," she said, though it sounded like a complaint.

    "Yup." The smug grin was back and it was legendary.

    Ruby put both hands on her face and dragged them down, groaning. "You're just like Yang," she repeated her earlier words, though with a tone of suffering.

    Toshika's smug grin brightened to a happy smile. "Yep yep! Gotta look after her little sister for her when she's not here!" she cheerfully said, patting Ruby on the head. "That's what older siblings are for, you know? We've got this whole pact and stuff. One so ubiquitous, so well known, we all instinctively do it."

    "Whyyyyy," Ruby whined.

    Ignoring the byplay, Malachite sighed. “Weiss, I promise, I have never met either of them before in this life. And, no, Ruby, there isn’t a conspiracy… at least not that I know of.”

    "Two Yaaaangs!"

    Toshika's snort didn't really help sell Malachite's assurances, but she kept any other comments to herself. "And that's three," she declared, totally ignoring Ruby. She winked back at Lorem, whose smirk turned into a grin, then started looking around the area as she searched for the others. "Now where's the sexy spoder and the pet?"

    Toshika's mention of Lorem snapped Ruby out of her complaining, her attention immediately captured by the swords in his hands. Her eyes widened, her breath became rapid, and she froze.

    Toshika didn't make much progress searching for any others before the boiling kettle that was a certain red reaper exploded.

    "EEEEE! YOU CAN MAKE WEAPONS!?" Ruby shrieked, jumping up and down.

    Toshika's eyes widened. "Uh oh-"

    Ruby immediately blurred into her rose petal swarm form and bolted towards Lorem. She caused a whirlwind to slam into Toshika as her new form catapulted away from the nine tailed Faunus.

    She came out of her Semblance with her hands around Lorem's arm and legs clamped around his leg, puppy eyes on full display and aimed squarely at his face.

    “Uhhhh… What are you-”

    "TEACH ME!" she demanded. "I MEAN, I KNOW YOU CAN'T TRADE SEMBLANCES BUT TEACH ME ANYWAYS!"

    Lorem was… resigned. He should have realized who he was talking to. “I seem to have acquired a limpet. Miss Rose, or would you prefer Ruby? Either way, I’d be hard pressed to teach you how I did that, but I can teach you other things that are quite similar.”

    Ruby's eyes widened and she grinned. "YESSSSSS!"

    Toshika shook her head and sighed, briefly combing back her long hair to make it resemble something normal again. "The cinnamon roll is pretty intense IRL, huh?" she joked.

    Lorem leveled Toshika with a very dry look. “I never would have guessed. I believe you introduced yourself as Toshika? I’d like to have a chat with you and Malachite when you both have a moment. Regarding certain ideas that could prove amusing...”

    Toshika gained a very scary grin. Not because it was terrifying in and of itself; no, she just seemed quite happy.

    The terror came from the implications. It wasn't a good idea to give her time to come up with Ideas if you valued your sanity or your continued evil existence, much less feed her input to make them worse.

    And Lorem had just proposed a meeting to do both.

    "Yes. Let's."

    -[lel]-

    And while the impromptu group talked, all centered around the almost-fatal accident caused by a princess, poor safety practices and an unfortunate sneeze, a faint presence hovered somewhere nearby, seeing as this was one of the few early parts of the story Yache could remember.

    But something was different about this one. Something… incredibly obvious, now that she thought about it.

    More people, for one thing, and the people were rather unusual, even by RWBY standards. That fox lady with way too many tails... the green-haired guy with what smelt like one artificial arm, she wasn’t sure which… that incredibly ordinary looking guy who simply smelt wrong to Yache’s Youkai nose… not a group you’d expect in RWBY, especially not this early.

    Rationally, Yache considered that it would be a good idea to get closer to at least hear them better, or even introduce herself, even if she was technically four to six years their senior.

    In actuality, though, the introverted, somewhat indecisive spider got stuck standing aside where she was. At least she looked like she was merely attracted by the commotion, instead of something that’d make her look even weirder.

    And that fox lady was giving Yache the creeps for some reason. Like she didn’t even need X-Ray goggles to see you naked. Brr.

    “Wait a minute…”

    Yache was pretty far away from what was now pretty obviously the quote unquote ‘camera view’, but even from that distance she managed to pick up a certain phrase. It took a moment for it to finally sink in that, yes, she did just hear those two weirdly specific yet all too familiar words, twice even.

    “Sufficient Velocity? Huh.”

    And just like that, the fox Faunus' ears stood straight on end and swiveled towards her, locking onto her form like missile rangefinders.

    “Uhh…” she said, rather eloquently, as she couldn’t help but notice the sudden change in the fox Faunus’ behavior.

    The ears were quickly followed by their attached head, the woman looking her way and breaking out into a massive smile.

    "Found you," she said, her eyes twinkling knowingly.

    As she had neither the experience nor the social instincts of interacting with weird cheery people, or normal people for that matter, Yache had only one choice of words at seeing the fox Faunus suddenly concentrate her entire attention at her.

    “Oh shit.”




    “Found who Toshika?” Lorem inquired, before looking in the same direction. “Ahhh, would that be the ‘Sexy Spoder’ you referred to after I introduced myself?”

    Toshika nodded, not taking her eyes off the blue and white, or perhaps black and gold, spider girl on the other side of the arrival area of Beacon. "She recognized and repeated the totally not a passphrase passphrase we may or may not have lucked into," she explained, breaking out into a huge grin. "And I'm pretty sure she can hear us from all the way over there. Seems I'm not the only one with high powered senses here." She spared a moment to flick her eyes over to Blake, who steadfastly pretended to read her book in reply. "...Present peeps excluded."

    “I really should look into getting enhanced senses at some point,” Malachite mused to himself. “I don’t think focusing aura into my ears and eyes will actually help, though, considering that’s also what I do to protect my sight and hearing from bright flashes and loud noises… like firing Verdant Wedge without the silencer attached. Seriously, don’t do that.”

    Toshika huffed and rolled her eyes at him. "Fire a railgun nearby your body without any silencing systems inside an atmosphere?" she scoffed. "I'm not that nuts."

    "It's a mass driver, not a railgun," Malachite griped before freezing. "And how did you know about that?"

    Ruby’s head snapped to look over at Malachite’s weapon and her eyes widened even further. “You made a RAILGUN?!” she squealed, jumping up and down while hanging from Lorem’s arm.

    “He made a railgun,” Toshika confirmed. She then turned her head towards Malachite momentarily, grinning at him over her shoulder. "And you'd be surprised at the things I know, Malachite," she informed him teasingly. "So, so many things."

    “It is not a railgun!” Malachite insisted. He filed away the suspicion that Toshika remembered far more of the planning sessions the group had had than he did, and possibly more about the world as a whole as well. Making a mental note to sit the fox down later, when others weren’t listening in, and grill her on various topics, he continued his argument, “A rail gun uses an electrified rail to shoot ferromagnetic projectiles at speed. Verdant Wedge uses pulsed gravity fluctuations to accelerate a projectile down the barrel. If you insist on using electricity based terminology, it’d be closer to a Gauss gun.”

    "All I'm hearing is railgun in fancy wordage!" Toshika singsonged right back, sticking out her tongue.

    “It’s not...” Malachite began before realization struck and he had to fight the urge to facepalm. Of course the damned troll was trying to get a rise out of him. Why use accurate terminology when not doing so would provoke a reaction?

    “Either way,” Lorem interjected, “It’s not something to fire without hearing protection. Which was the point of Malachite’s statement.”

    “So…” Malachite continued slowly, “if I ever say I’m dropping the silencer, harden your ears.” Looking directly at Blake, he added, “Especially if you have enhanced hearing.”

    Toshika's ears drooped and she instinctively reached up to shield them with her hands. "But my ears are so soft and fluffy! Why would I ever harden them?!" she mock complained.

    “You do that often?” Blake asked, raising an eyebrow from behind her book before looking away from Malachite’s level gaze.

    “Occasionally,” the green haired teen admitted. “It’s surprisingly effective at disorienting people, especially Faunus.”

    Toshika dropped her hands back down and her ears returned to normal. "A railgun, effective at disorientation?" she gasped. "In other news, a plasma beam is an effective popcorn popper!"

    Malachite shrugged. “I’m not sure about using plasma, but you can use an induction forge, if you tune it right. Place a bowl at the bottom and just pour the kernels in. Of course, it’s a pretty good way to get the instructors mad at you, so I don’t recommend it. Even if it really is good popcorn.” He paused a moment before changing the subject, “Now, what should we do about our friend over there?”

    “Shall we go and bring her over?” Lorem inquired, looking over at the spider Faunus.

    Toshika cracked a smirk his way and held up her hand, pointing towards the spider woman all the way over where she was. "We could do that," she singsonged, twirling her hand, "or we could do… this."

    Toshika flexed her Semblance on the lowest setting she'd yet tried, covering Yache in a slight purple glow and giving her a constant, ever so small, but still quite obvious pull towards the group's position.

    "...Do what?" Ruby asked, finally detaching from Lorem's arm.




    Yache sighed in resignation, lightly struggling against the light pull of gravity that seemed to insist on bringing her over to the quote unquote Camera View.

    She was feeling slightly rebellious, in addition to wanting to practice one pretty important skill so, instead of just giving in and walking to them, she decided to do something different.

    With a slight tug on her mana, she covered herself in an aura of floatiness, ending up gently hovering a few millimeters off the ground, and letting Toshika drag Yache to her if she was so insistent about ‘inviting’ her to the group.

    While lightly pouting all the way through.
     
  9. Threadmarks: Chapter 4
    Jonakhensu

    Jonakhensu I trust you know where the happy button is?

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    Team SALTY
    Chapter 4​

    “This, apparently,” Yache answered Ruby’s earlier question once she floated closer to the group, simultaneously dispelling the hover.

    Toshika allowed her hand to flop downwards, her ears following suit. A slight pout erupted on her face. "Really? Making me carry you?" she asked Yache, trying to sound offended.

    It didn't really work, but she tried.

    Lorem, on the other hand, was looking at Yache with something akin to interest. She has some form of magic? He marveled at the thought. I wonder if she could help me with my magecraft experiments...

    Ruby stood frozen, staring at Yache with wide eyes. Which was mutual, though on Yache’s side it was mostly unintentional. She just had naturally wide eyes, okay?

    "You're a spider," Ruby helpfully stated.

    “Guilty as charged,” Yache agreed in the same voice.

    "And I'm a fox, Ruby, welcome to Remnant," Toshika deadpanned, ruffling her hair.

    Ruby immediately snapped out of it and whacked Toshika's hand away. "Hey! It just surprised me, okay?" she fired off at the fox Faunus, then looked to Yache. "Sorry, you just- I haven't seen any bug Faunus before."

    “Arachnid actually. But either way, no problem,” she shrugged. “I’m more interested in certain words that I seem to have heard being said. About sufficiency of velocities, specifically,” she said, looking across the three other members of this group, barring Blake and Weiss, whom she already knew. Sort of. Kinda.

    Ruby frowned and glared suspiciously at Toshika. "You suuure there's no conspiracy?"

    Toshika winked her way and gestured to the four of them that hadn't been there in the original timeline. "Conspiracy no. Cool things to come, yes."

    Malachite sighed. "So much for trying to be subtle."

    "Subtlety and I belong in the same paragraph as the word Not," Toshika fired back.

    Malachite gave her the most deadpan stare he could, but he just received an at this point almost trademark grin back. He sighed again, shook his head, and holding a hand out to the spider girl he took the initiative to introduce the group. "Anyway, I'm Malachite Seolfor, and these are Weiss Schnee, Ruby Rose, Lorem Ipsum, Toshika Corona, Huey, and Blake." He gestured to each in turn, getting a wave or other sign of acknowledgement from each.

    Lorem gave a lackadaisical two finger salute when his name was said, with an accompanying “Yo!”

    "Sup, spoder," Toshika said, waving Yache's way. Not just with a hand, but with three tails. "Welcome to the nuthouse. Mind the cinnamon roll and the clueless man." She pointed out Ruby and Malachite in turn. "Also, we have ice cream." One of her tails pointed at Weiss, ensuring it was out of the heiress' view.

    Weiss' response was a stiff nod, which was at least better than the frown he had been half expecting toward the obvious Faunus… assuming she actually was a Faunus and not something completely different, of course. Malachite had never heard of a Faunus with that many animal traits, after all. The same applied to Toshika, actually. He assumed it was because of a paperwork error somewhere, similar to what had happened to his own paperwork when he had been setting up his reincarnation.

    "Hi! I'm Ruby Rose, and this is Crescent Rose!" Ruby cheerfully introduced herself and her truly massive scythe to Yache, whirling the latter off her back, mechashifting it midair, and planting the blade straight into the concrete.

    Malachite winced before asking, “Ruby, how often do you have to pay for property damages?”

    Ruby looked to Malachite and raised her eyebrows. “Huh?” she asked, confused. "What damage?"

    Malachite just stared, silently judging, at where Crescent Rose's blade was embedded in the walkway.

    “I’ve likely got her beat by a fair bit anyway, even if it was just once.” Yache responded in her place. “Don’t ask. Will be funnier if you find out yourself.”

    Ruby looked down at where Malachite was looking and jerked Crescent Rose out of the cobblestone, revealing the perfectly smooth, undamaged material beneath. She looked back at him and gave him a tiny, adorable smirk.

    “Damn it, I can’t believe I forgot about that,” Malachite griped, palming his face. “Sorry about that, back home, they didn’t build the roads with the slight mix of earth and gravity dust most roads use, so they don’t repair themselves. Dealing with all the minor repairs from people doing that got annoying fast.”

    Ruby brought her free hand to her mouth and gasped, horrified. "That poor concrete!"

    The spider Faunus chuckled and folded her arms before continuing. “Either way, I’m Yache Ruhm. Pleased to meet you all. I’d show off my weapon as well, but, uhh…” she shrugged, “God Eater’s still a work in progress. I have a backup, but it ain’t that impressive.”

    As she said that, she looked at the three people here who clearly weren’t entirely… normal, in more ways than one. “As a side note, I think that we need to speak properly about all of this when we’re done with the initiation,” she stated, frowning, “Because I have no idea what the hell’s going on. Or why, for that matter.”

    "Welcome to the ignorance party," Blake spoke up, her head still in her book. "I've got no idea what's going on either."

    Toshika grinned her way and shrugged. "You know what they say about curiosity," she teased the hidden kitty.

    Said cat Faunus gave her a dark, entirely unamused look, to which the fox Faunus just smirked back.

    Lorem chuckled. “Well this is going to be a fun year.” he grinned. “Shouldn’t we be making our way to the… was it the ballroom or the auditorium?”

    “There’s a difference?” Toshika snarked back, tossing her hair over her shoulders. “How many huge, empty rooms can Beacon have, anyways?” She gestured around to the huge campus, rocking back and forth on the balls of her feet. “I mean it’s way bigger than on the screen, yeah, but still. Three? Four? At max?”

    Blake’s ears twitched under her bow and she looked up, finally having a use for herself in the ongoing conversation. Without letting go of her book with her hand, she used the other one to dig her scroll out of her pocket and flip it sideways so she could use it. A couple of moments later, she had the answer. “Seven, apparently.”

    Toshika found her momentum cancelled with the abrupt stop of gale-force winds hitting a passenger jet. "...Oh."

    “...So which huge empty room do we go to?” Lorem asks. “I’d like to get there before we need to be there.” It would be nice to be early for once…

    Weiss pulled out her own scroll and began looking through it. “We should have a good half an hour to get there,” she stated. “The opening remarks won't be starting for another forty-five minutes.”

    Malachite nodded, following along with Weiss’ reasoning. “That’ll give us plenty of time to find advantageous positions for the speech and meet with anyone prominent enough to network with immediately.”

    Weiss continued, apparently caught up in the explanation. “Anyone who can’t be recognized on sight doesn’t need to be courted before making additional observations.”

    Toshika turned to Weiss, looking very surprised. "...Huh," she lamented, glancing up and down Weiss' body as if there was some secret that she'd just become aware of, but in actuality attempting to verify that the woman in front of her was really Weiss Schnee.

    Weiss' query was hesitant. "...What?"

    "That's smart, makes sense, and has some merit," Toshika explained. She leaned over and peered at the wielder of Myrtenaster. "Are you sure you're Weiss Schnee?"

    “Excuse me?” Weiss asked, obviously affronted. “Are you calling me a fraud?”

    “Really, Toshika?” Malachite cut in with a shake of his head before Weiss could do more than bristle. “At this point I can’t tell if you’re trolling or serious.”

    Toshika blinked in his direction, tilting her head to the side. "There's a difference?" she asked, echoing her earlier words.

    The green clad youth sighed. “Why am I not surprised,” he muttered. “Why wouldn’t the heiress of a Remnant-wide super company be smart and make valid points?”

    Next to him, Weiss nodded, “Thank you.”

    Toshika raised an eyebrow his way, turned to look Weiss over again, and returned her disbelieving gaze to Malachite. "Two words, bro," she declared, throwing up a tail instead of her fingers for each one. "Uptight. Princess. Who hasn't been given the Speech of Ports yet." She screwed up her eyes and looked to the sky, sticking out her tongue. "Okay that's actually eleven words, but still."

    “I don’t know what you’re talking about,” Malachite replied. “But Weiss has been perfectly cordial with me, once we got over our family tensions.”

    Toshika looked at him like he was nuts, but then she remembered. "Ah, right, for a moment there I forgot that you decided memory erasure was a good plan," she lamented, sighing dramatically. "Woe is I for I must carry us through the darkness of ignorance!"

    “What are you two talking about?” Weiss asked, looking between Malachite and Toshika.

    “Based on how Toshika has been acting,” Malachite began, “it looks like we’ll be explaining things to all three of you, but I’d rather wait until after team selections, if we’re going to be sharing. It’ll save time if we don’t need to repeat ourselves however many times.”`

    "We could do that," Toshika sarcastically fired back, "or we could be like a certain wizard and keep our potential teammates in the dark! That'll go fine, I'm positive."

    “I’m… going to assume this would make sense if I knew what you’re talking about,” Malachite stated dryly. “And I was hoping to keep things as quiet as possible, not keep teammates in the dark.”

    "Quiet," Toshika repeated. She glanced at Yache, Lorem, Ruby, Weiss, down to her own chest, and then back to Malachite. "Us. Right."

    Malachite looked around at the others and had to admit defeat. “In my defense, I forgot almost everything about the rest of you guys… and I meant keeping things quiet from, presumably, the wizard you mentioned and certain other parties until it’s too late for them to do anything about it.”

    "The moment we arrived is when that ship sailed," Toshika declared assuredly, smirking. "Honestly, and I know you do know this one, we're all extreme overkill for Remnant." She pointed a tail at Yache to underscore her point. "And if sexy spoder's comments about wanton destruction are any indicator, it's likely that the wizard I'm talking about already knows some janky shit is up."

    “Pretty much” Yache responded shamelessly.

    “Be that as it may, that doesn’t mean I want to broadcast it,” Malachite stated. “I get enough attacks from people as it is without giving people another reason to come after me. The White Fang is bad enough. I don’t want to deal with religious nuts, too.”

    Toshika's smirk morphed into a gigantic grin, signaling the teasing that was about to arrive. "So that's how it manifested? Neat," she commented. "Anyways, that ship will also sail by the time we're done here. You know it, I know it, and I'm pretty sure our compatriots know it too." She jutted her thumb backwards over her shoulder at Beacon itself. "They and the poor, innocent little ones on this planet are the only ones in the dark on that." She immediately winced, realizing what she'd said, and glanced at Ruby and Weiss apologetically. "No offense."

    Ruby, for her part, just looked at Toshika askance. "Wuh?"

    Malachite pinched the bridge of his nose, saying, "I'm sure saying that won't cause any misconceptions at all."

    Weiss bristled again before abruptly calming down. "I feel like I should be offended, but I'm not quite sure why," she noted. "Nothing Toshika said is actually offensive."

    "You… should probably get used to that," Malachite reluctantly suggested. "One of her favorite pastimes is provoking reactions from people."

    Toshika grinned, smug satisfaction pouring from her every being, and shrugged. "It's a thing. You don't have to like the thing, hell I'd be happily surprised if you did, but you should probably at least prepare for the copious amounts of total bullshit attending battle school with me will bring. And the headaches. And feeling offended at things you don't know to be offended at. And probably having your beliefs of how the universe works taken out back and shot like Yeller."

    Lorem rolled his eyes, looking very amused. “I blame you if that happens.” He jokingly griped.

    Ruby was following what Toshika was saying, but only for so long. Then one of those headaches her new Yang-with-fluff stand-in mentioned blossomed as she tried to actually comprehend what she'd said. "Oww," she complained, reaching up to rub her head.

    Toshika immediately extended a tail to give Ruby comforting head pats, something that banished the growing headache immediately. Her tails were unbelievably soft. "Don't think on what I say too much, Rubes. Half of it's basically infohazard. The other half is fuckery. And like, thirty percent is nuggets of wisdom."

    "That's… more than a hundred…" Ruby tried to protest, but she lost her will to keep talking. She melted upwards, cooing a little at the soft fluff on her head. It was actually really nice. She needed to put Zwei on her head and see if it felt the same.

    While that was going on, nobody seemed to notice as Yache quietly walked up to Blake, stood to the side of her, and pulled out her scroll, apparently also beginning to read something. They looked so similar, at least in posture if not in the number of limbs, that it must have been intentional.

    Blake took a moment to glance at Yache from the side, not turning her head, and snorted after she took in the spider Faunus' stance. She returned to reading her book, this time with a smile on her face.

    To make sure that she knew where everything was, Yache decided to look through the Academy’s map. The fact that it let her interact with Blake in her language was only a side benefit. Yache was way too aware of how confusing some universities were about their layouts. If there was something that Hogwarts got right, it’s that sometimes it felt like the stairs used Maurits Escher’s paintings as inspiration for their geometry.

    So, apparently Beacon has an auditorium-sized sauna. Which is also sometimes used as an informal smithing room, sometimes at the same time. And to reach it, you have to go up the stairs near auditorium 23, then down the stairs near auditorium 37, and then use the stairs that bypass the second floor and go down to the first floor immediately. Okay, makes sense.

    Yache only noticed that she’d been quietly mumbling all of this when she looked up for a moment and saw Blake look at her with a raised eyebrow. Not quite knowing how to eyeroll with five eyes, Yache instead settled for a huff.

    “Experience”, she explained to Blake, relaying that after years of navigating such places, she was just used to weirdness with elevation and other such architectural inconsistencies. Blake’s eyebrow slowly went down, and they both returned to their devices.

    On the other side of the group, Ruby nearly purred into the fluffy fox tails serving as her standing cushion.

    Toshika had the smuggest grin to end all smug grins on her face. “I think I win the floof contest,” she nonchalantly declared, perking up her fox ears one at a time. She accidentally whacked one of her Balls with the tip of her left ear. The wince that erased her smug was pained and agonizing, but not because of any kind of injury. Her Aura prevented that.

    No, it was because when the round metal met an unstoppable object, the Ball lost and rang like a gong.

    Ruby jumped straight up out of the floof cocoon and had Crescent Rose in a combat stance in less time than it took Toshika to blink. “WHERE’S THE BAD GUY!?” she shrieked.

    Blake startled out of her silent-off with Yache, then winced in actual pain as the high pitch of the tiny ringing metal pierced her sensitive, totally hidden from everyone ears underneath her bow. “That was pleasant,” she deadpanned. There was no way she’d be able to read her book now. She sighed to herself and put the novel away in her bag.

    “Very pleasant,” Yache agreed. Unlike Blake, she continued to look into her scroll, apparently used to sudden loud noises from her past life. That is, until she looked up for a moment and stuck a finger in her earhole, wiggling it a bit. “Okay, seriously though. That was loud enough that I’m now partially deafened. Again.”

    “I didn’t even hit it that hard! With a fluffy ear! Come the fuck on!” Toshika complained.

    Malachite looked at the orb critically. “That sounds pretty flat. You should work on the harmonics some. It’d be less irritating that way."

    “Maybe add an actual bell inside each of them,” added Yache. “Two benefits: better harmony when you smack into something, and you get to annoy your enemies with your jingle balls.”

    Toshika stood there for a few moments, stunned, while a smile slowly grew on her face. She turned to Yache and threw up her hands. "Haha, excellent!" she abruptly cackled. "You can still pun!"

    Ruby groaned in pain, planting her scythe into the ground just so she could bang her head on the shaft.

    “This is going to be an interesting year…” Lorem muttered before looking over at Toshika. “Maybe have different tones for them, and try to make music while you kill Grimm?”

    "Fantastic idea, Swordguy!" Toshika heartily agreed, bobbing her head. "I wonder if I can get them to vibrate with my Semblance…" One of her Balls drifted down towards her hands and she started to look slightly constipated, sticking her tongue out the side of her mouth in concentration.

    Blake saw the fox begin yet another tangent and realized the… whatever this group she’d somehow found herself included in were doing wouldn’t end soon unless someone ended it for them. “We need to actually go into Beacon if we’re planning on joining the school this year, guys,” she helpfully piped up.

    The rest of them, excepting Yache, still being a fellow quiet person next to her, focused their attention on Blake for a few quiet seconds. Despite the fact she could see them visibly considering what she said, that many eyes on her made her ears try to fold back inside her bow. The other obvious Faunus who almost seemed to revel in her animal traits in a way Blake really hadn’t ever seen before was the worst, though, and not just because she somehow felt naked under the fox’s gaze.

    “...It would be a waste to come all this way and then miss our chance by not even going in," Malachite agreed.

    Toshika pouted for a few seconds, but eventually relented. "Fiiine," she whined, dropping her… Blake refused to call her weapons what she'd named them, even in her own head.

    Lorem sighed in relief. “Okay, good. I seem to have a talent for getting lost though, so if I vanish part way there, don’t worry, I’ll make it in time. Probably. I hope… Maybe this time I won’t end up in Vacuo on my way to somewhere within five miles of Atlas…” He muttered the last bit just softly enough that Toshika, Blake, and Yache were the only ones that could hear him.

    Toshika's eyes widened and she almost beamed at Lorem, a new opportunity for messing with someone located by her trolldar. The twin fluffy sensors of her needling sense locked onto him and kept pointing at him, even as she turned her entire body towards him and shifted stance into something similar to his. "You get lost that badly?" she asked, sounding innocent but only truly so to those who couldn't see the pleased look on her face, "Can you successfully navigate straight hallways, or are we going to need to hold your hand?"

    Yache blinked a few times, and tore her attention away from the scroll to stare at Lorem.

    “Are you, perhaps, related to a certain Masaki Andoh?” she asked half incredulously, half humorously. “Green hair, green eyes, once got so lost that he ended up on the wrong side of the world?”

    Lorem stared dead ahead, staying silent, a look in his eyes that a certain red reaper had only ever seen in her uncle's before now.

    Ruby, clearly the person with the highest empathy in the impromptu group, put Crescent Rose away on her back. She approached Lorem and placed a comforting hand on his arm, trying to ignore the clear muscle underneath her palm. "You okay, Lorem?" she asked softly.

    For once, Toshika didn't snark. Even she knew when things were getting delicate.

    Lorem gave Ruby a grateful smile, whatever past horror once more buried. “I’ll be fine, thank you Ruby. It’s just… something I’ll need to try to work past. On the plus side, if you want me to avoid any ambushes on the way to a destination, I just need to be told to bring my team to every hostile. I do have a hard time tracking though.” he said, trying to lighten the mood a little.

    "...Oh my gods you're a Stormtrooper," Toshika blurted out.

    Ruby whirled around and glared at Toshika, trying to get her to shut up, but that failed as soon as the fox Faunus had her realization.

    “I can aim just fine, thank you very much,” was Lorem’s immediate reaction.

    "Except at enemies by your own admission," Toshika pointed out, smugly satisfied. "Which makes you a Stormtrooper."

    “My skill with firearms is not the same as my lack thereof at getting places.” Lorem said, almost as if he’d said this several times before. “I can aim a weapon, I cannot follow a path. No matter how much I wish the latter weren’t true…”

    "...Soooo," Toshika reasoned, drawing out her word. "Your feet are Stormtroopers."

    “...I wish I could deny that. I really do.” came the disgruntled response. “It doesn’t apply when I’m kicking someone though.”

    "What's a Stormtrooper?" Ruby finally asked.

    A blonde, lost looking guy in lightweight armor walking by at that exact moment happened to overhear Ruby's question. Being the helpful person he was, Jaune sought to fill the little red reaper in on one of his favorite pastimes. "Stormtroopers are the guys in white armor from Star Wars. They're part of the armies of the Empire that follow around the Dark Lords of the Sith and do their malevolent, evil bidding!" he ecstatically exclaimed, turning and merging into the rough circle of unusual people. "They, uh… they're really bad at aiming, though."

    Toshika noticed him, her eyebrows rose, and then he started talking. She seemed downright surprised at his knowledge. Once he was finished, she held up two tails. "Okay, one; How the hell does Jaune know what Star Wars is?" she asked.

    Jaune gasped. "How do you know my name?"

    Toshika looked over at him and gave him the best deadpan, unimpressed look she could. She looked back at Malachite and rolled her eyes. "You know, I can kinda see now why Lisa used an excuse. It's easier than explaining," she mused, much to Lorem’s confusion.

    “It also let her be even more smug,” Malachite added dryly.

    "True," Toshika agreed. Another turn of her head and a mere two seconds later, with a knowing smirk to her lips, the fox Faunus replied to Jaune's question. "I'm psychic."

    “Yup,” the green-haired youth sighed. “Just like that. Memetically vulpine grin and everything.”

    “Literally,” Yache added, having continued reading something on her scroll by that point.

    “Wait… Who’s this Lisa you three are talking about?” Lorem asked, sounding immensely confused.

    "One of the best girls in the multiverse," Toshika informed him. "And a downright fox." She then neglected to say anything else.

    “Or the worst,” Malachite added. “It really depends on who you ask, though I think most of us would approve of her, at least in some regards.” Turning to Toshika, he added, “And Star Wars came out years ago.”

    Toshika raised her eyebrows. "Huh. That's new." Then her eyes widened and she let out a little gasp as she realized how Ozpin had managed the meme the day before. "So that's how Ozzy knew that meme!"

    “It was one of the highest grossing movies, ever,” Weiss confirmed. “We saw an increase in dust crystal purchases that lasted for months.”

    “I bet it slowed down when they realized you would need more than a single type of dust to make a lightsaber,” Malachite posited.

    “Yes,” Weiss agreed, “and using more than one crystal in sequence that way tends to be less than advisable.”

    “The ones using the hard light Dust were fun,” Jaune commented. Under his breath, he grumbled, “Even if my sisters never wanted to play with me.”

    “If only my semblance worked on things I saw on a screen…” Lorem’s contribution was quiet, but he seemed a touch smug for some reason.

    Toshika blinked, surprised, and turned to look askance at Lorem. “Now that I’m paying attention, how are you doing the swords thing?” she asked, confused. “Aren’t you supposed to turn into a fuckoff huge firey rage dragon?”

    Ruby’s eyes widened and she once more beamed at the sword-toting deceivingly normal guy. “You have a fire semblance too?”

    Lorem grinned. “I don’t have a fire semblance, no. Toshika? I decided to change some things around, which leads me to how I do the sword thing. I am the bone of my sword after all.”

    Toshika stared at him for a few moments, processing what he'd just said. "...Huh," she eventually said. "Neat. Fate, Magneto Omega, or something else I've never heard of?"

    “Fate, I thought that would have been obvious from the weapons I showed off. I’m just a passing-through Pseudoservant anyway, remember that.”

    “Well, if we weren’t on the road before, we certainly are now…” Yache mumbled under her nose. She was, apparently, really invested in whatever she was currently reading.

    Malachite sucked in a breath and manfully resisted the urge to massage his brow. Here he was, trying to be a somewhat normal headmaster masquerading as a student while the other three people who’d decided to come into this life apparently decided to see how much they could break the world. He hoped the last one, the one Toshika had referred to as a pet, would be somewhat reasonable, but he highly doubted it. He was sure things were only going to be getting crazier, and, as the probable designated straight man, he could already feel a building headache.




    Elsewhere a certain small black fox sneezed, looking around in confusion at the sudden allergies, before returning to his computer, manifesting arms of illusion to manipulate it. Arranging for the White Fang to attack the restaurant that Winter Schnee would be at for the seventeenth time this year would be amusing, and since some of his students would be there it’d double as dodging practice. Giggling, he decided to add an assignment to his syllabus this year, in addition to his normal extra credit of pranking Ironwood, of spying on Winter. Her levels of paranoia at this point were incredibly amusing.




    Toshika turned back to the group and wagged the tip of her second tail. "As I was saying, and for two…" she continued, but seemed to lose her pace. A moment later she sighed and dropped her tails. "Actually yeah no, I got nothing. Seriously, how the hell?"

    Yache folded her scroll and walked back up to the main group. “I think we were talking about how we should probably go and find the room that we’re supposed to go to for the reception” she reminded her. “Speaking of, I found the announcement. It should be room one oh seven, third furthest one from us on the map.”

    Lorem shook off his confusion and looked at the group. “I swear to whatever higher power is listening, if I don’t arrive with the rest of you I’m kicking that higher power between the legs.”
     
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